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Published: 12:10 | 16/6/16

Keane not hopeful on Walters

Forward sits out training again

Jonathan Walters has all but been ruled out of the Republic of Ireland's Euro 2016 Group B clash against Belgium.

Walters has been struggling with an Achilles injury for some time and aggravated the problem during Monday's 1-1 draw with Sweden at the Stade de France.

The Stoke forward has been unable to train this week assistant manager Roy Keane admits he is almost certain to miss Saturday's game in Bordeaux.

"Jon didn't train today and it doesn't look like he will play. We're not hopeful," Keane told reporters after Thursday's training session.

While he will miss Saturday's game, Keane has ruled to rule Walters out of the rest of the tournament.

"I'm certainly not writing him off. Sometimes when you miss a game through injury you can still bring something to the party. Don't be writing him out of this tournament. I'm certainly not," the Ireland assistant manager said.

Belgium were beaten by Italy in their Group E opener on Monday evening but Keane was quick to dismiss a Belgian journalist who suggested Ireland were now favourites to win in Bordeaux.

"Ireland favourites? Have you been drinking?" Keane asked.

"There are not that many great teams out there but Belgium are a good team, a really good team.

"I don't know if they've got much criticism from the Italy game, but they still created lots and lots of chances.

"They have the potential to be a great team and they came in as one of the favourites and I still think they will do well in the tournament."

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