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Galaxy clears Robbie Keane to join Ireland for exhibition games

May 22, 2013|By Jim Peltz
  • Galaxy forward Robbie Keane has been given permission to join Ireland for two exhibition matches.
Galaxy forward Robbie Keane has been given permission to join Ireland for… (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles…)

The Galaxy reversed course and allowed star forward Robbie Keane to join Ireland's national soccer team for two exhibition games, or friendlies.

The Football Assn. of Ireland said Wednesday that Keane, the Irish team's captain, could play in the club's games against England at Wembley Stadium on May 29 and against the nation of Georgia at Aviva Stadium in Dublin on June 2.

Keane, 32, initially was expected to miss the matches due to Galaxy commitments but later received clearance, the association said.

"I would like to thank L.A. Galaxy for reconsidering their decision after further conversations between us, which really means a lot to me," Keane said in a statement.

"We have reached an agreement that will enable me to make it to the [Ireland] games and I look forward to playing my part," he said.

However, it's not yet clear whether Keane will play in both friendlies.

Keane is expected to play for Ireland in the game against England and thus miss the Galaxy's game the same day against the Carolina RailHawks of the North American Soccer League in the U.S. Open Cup tournament.

But it wasn't immediately known whether Keane would play in the June 2 game against Georgia or play for the Galaxy in its Major League Soccer match against the New England Revolution on the same day, Galaxy spokesman Justin Pearson said in an email.

Either way, Keane probably would join Ireland for its World Cup qualifying match against the Faroe Islands on June 7, in which case he probably would miss the Galaxy's MLS game June 8 against Real Salt Lake.

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