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Ferguson out of Ireland's Euro qualifiers

Brighton & Hove Albion striker Evan Ferguson has been ruled out of Ireland's upcoming Euro 2024 qualifiers due to a knee injury, the Football Association of Ireland said in a statement on Tuesday.

Ferguson scored a hat-trick in Brighton's 3-1 win over Newcastle United in the Premier League on Saturday, but picked up an injury during the game.

"Republic of Ireland striker Evan Ferguson has been ruled out of the two UEFA EURO 2024 qualifiers against France and the Netherlands," the FAI statement said.

"Ferguson reported for international duty on Sunday but after assessment from the Ireland medical team, Ferguson has been ruled out of both fixtures."

The 18-year-old picked up the injury late in the game and was replaced with nine minutes left. Ferguson had been expected to lead Ireland's attack, with four Premier League goals so far this season.

The young forward has made six appearances for Ireland having made his debut in November 2022. He scored his first international goal in a friendly against Latvia in March.

His second goal for his country came in Ireland's most recent qualifier, a 3-0 win over Gibraltar. That victory gave Ireland their only points in Group B from their opening three games.

Stephen Kenny's Ireland will play France in Paris on Thursday before a home game with the Netherlands on Sunday. REUTERS