Cathcart comes back into NI fold

The 21-year-old, who joined the Seasiders from Manchester United in
the summer, could be in line for his first cap after missing May’s
friendlies with Turkey and Chile and the friendly in Montenegro
earlier this month. Fulham defender Aaron Hughes has returned after
injury, while 17-year-old Wolves winger Johnny Gorman has kept his
place and could make his first competitive appearance for his
country. Cathcart is the only uncapped player in the 20-man party.
Manchester United pair Jonny and Corry Evans are both in the squad,
the latter impressing in the recent friendlies despite also not
having played a competitive first-team game for the Old Trafford
club. Gorman, who is still at school, is also still to appear for
the Wolves first team. There is no place in the squad, though, for
the Evans brothers’ United club-mate Oliver Norwood, nor Celtic
midfielder Paddy McCourt. Northern Ireland will be hoping for a
better result than they got the last time they travelled to
Maribor, when they suffered a 2-0 defeat in a World Cup qualifier
in October 2008. Squad: Maik Taylor (Birmingham), Jonathan Tuffey
(Inverness), Alan Blayney (Linfield); Jonny Evans (Man Utd),
Stephen Craigan (Motherwell), Craig Cathcart (Blackpool), Gareth
McAuley (Ipswich), Aaron Hughes (Fulham), Chris Baird (Fulham);
Grant McCann (Peterborough), Chris Brunt (West Brom), Jonny Gorman
(Wolves), Corry Evans (Man Utd), Steven Davis (Rangers), Sammy
Clingan (Coventry); David Healy (Sunderland), Warren Feeney
(Oldham), Kyle Lafferty (Rangers), Martin Paterson (Burnley), Rory
Patterson (Plymouth).