Mainz to host Georgia's qualifier with Ireland
LONDON, Aug 28 (Reuters) - Georgia will play their home World Cup qualifier against Ireland on September 6 in the German city of Mainz, FIFA announced on Thursday.
The European Group Eight qualifier was moved by world soccer's ruling body from Tbilisi to a neutral venue due to the tensions in Georgia following a military conflict with Russia over the breakaway South Ossetia province earlier this month.
The conflict erupted when Georgia sent in troops and tanks to try to take back the province, provoking a huge counter-attack from Russia.
After playing Ireland, Georgia travel to Udine, Italy, to take on the world champions in their next qualifier on Sept. 10.
Meanwhile, Georgia coach Hector Cuper has named the following 26-man squad for the 2010 World Cup, European Group Eight qualifiers at home to Ireland on Sept. 6 and away to Italy four days later:
Goalkeepers: Giorgi Loria (Dinamo Tbilisi), Giorgi Makaridze (Dinamo Tbilisi), Roin Kvaskhvadze (FC Zestaponi)
Defenders: Kakha Kaladze (AC Milan), Zurab Khizanishvili (Blackburn Rovers), Mate Gvinianidze (1860 Munich), Malkhaz Asatiani (Lokomotiv Moscow), Lasha Salukvadze (Rubin Kazan), Zaal Eliava (Dinamo Tbilisi), Giorgi Shashiashvili (Sturm Graz), Alexandre Kvakhadze (WIT Georgia Tbilisi), Ucha Lobzhanidze (FC Zestaponi)
Midfielders: Levan Kenia (Schalke 04), Levan Kobiashvili (Schalke 04), Zurab Menteshashvili (FK Ventspils), Davit Mujiri (Lokomotiv Moscow), Dato Kvirkvelia (Rubin Kazan), Gogita Gogua (Spartak Nalchik), Levan Khmaladze (Dinamo Tbilisi), Davit Odikadze (Dinamo Tbilisi), Irakli Klimiashvili (WIT Georgia Tbilisi)
Forwards: Alexandre Iashvili (Karlsruhe SC), Davit Siradze (Spartak Nalchik), Levan Mchedlidze (Empoli), Rati Aleksidze (Lokomotivi Tbilisi), Beka Gotsiridze (FC Zestaponi).