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Euro 2012 Spotlight - Rep. Of Ireland
Footytubeblog (Blog) 4 years ago

FIFA World Ranking

Tournament Odds

Key Players
Shay Given – GK – 121 Caps
Robbie Keane – ST - 116 Caps, 53 Goals
Aiden McGeady – RW – 48 Caps, 2 Goals

Team Rating

C: Spain, Italy, Rep. of Ireland, Croatia

Notable Facts
  • Only the second time they have qualified for the finals.

  • Defeated Italy the last time they played.

  • Smashed Estonia 5-1(agg) to come through the play-offs

The Republic of Ireland's Chances
With all three of the other teams in the group ranking higher than Ireland it is very easy to write them off completely. However a recent win against fellow group members Italy and Spain's tendency to take things a bit easy in the group phase of major tournaments (lost to Switzerland in the 2012 World cup) could point to a small upset.

The Republics chances rest heavily on the more experienced players in the squad if they can find performances from Given, Dunne, Duff and most importantly Keane then they could shock a few teams.

In their history they have only managed to qualify for 3 World Cups and 2 European Championships. Though they missed out on the last World Cup only by the smallest of margins (that margin being Thierry Henry's hand, twice!). The greatest success they achieved was during mighty Jack Charltons managerial reign where they reached the Quarter Finals of the 1990 World Cup on route they drew against England and the Netherlands then beat a very good Romanian side and finally succumbed to a 1-0 defeat by host nation Italy.

Their only previous appearance in the European Championship finals came in 1988 when the tournament consisted of 8 teams. During this tournament they had a solitary win which came against an England side who lost every game.

The star man in the team is undoubtedly Robbie Keane with his return of 53 goals from 116 caps makes him the top scorer for his country second place is Niall Quinn on 21. He is also joint second on the all time top scorers for European Championship qualification (alongside legends Raul and Jan Koller) In a team that has only qualified twice for the finals that is outstanding. At 31 Keane could be on the wane of his abilities but a strong showing for LA Galaxy and a successful short loan move to Aston Villa shows he is still going strong.

Alongside Robbie's goal scoring heroics their chance for success will be built upon being difficult to beat and that will fall to the likes of massively experienced Shay Given and Richard Dunne who have both been consistent performers for both club and country for a long time now.

There is not a lot of creativity in the side and a lot will be asked of Damien Duff and Aiden McGeady. Aiden has taken a while to warm up to international football but is showed his form in qualification with 2 goals and 3 assists and was also voted the second best right winger by the Russian football union despite only playing half a season with Spartak Moscow.

At 33 Damien Duff is almost certainly in his last major tournament and has lost a lot of his pace that once terrified defenders. Although he has been used sparingly at Fulham he has had a few good games that proves he still has the ability to change a match.

On paper this look like an early exit for the Republic of Ireland but as FIFA12 constantly tells me “games are not played on paper” which is true but you feel they will have to elevate themselves to a couple of heroic performances to get out of group it is very hard to see anyone but Spain winning. If they did manage to finish second it would put them in the qurter finals where the likely opponents would be England or France either would provide to be a very tasty match.

“Araz Index”
Chance of qualifying from Group: 20%
Predicted Knock Out Stage: Group Stage

“Matt Index”
Chance of qualifying from Group: 10%
Predicted Knock Out Stage: Group Stage

Matt's Possibly True Trivia

  • If you capture an Irish player before sunrise he will grant you 3 wishes.

  • Since the 18th November 2009 it is now a requirement of law to slap any Frenchmen you come across between the hours of 21:00 - 23:03.

This blog does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of footytube or its partners.
Canning (Tottenham Hotspur) 4 years ago
1 star really lmao
[account-removed] 4 years ago
Yeah, what's with the 1 star rating? That's wrong! 2 and a half stars at least.
Markodon (NK Dinamo Zagreb) 4 years ago
I think it should say "squad rating", to make it clear it refers to the squad on paper. Then I think it's fairly accurate to assign Ireland one star, in comparison to the other teams at the Euro. But what this rating does not take into account is the Irish fighting spirit and teamwork
ManOnDMoon (Manchester City) 4 years ago
I dunno.... They gave 2 stars to Czech Republic who are behind in FIFA world ranking. 14 games unbeaten should still deserve 2 stars
Markodon (NK Dinamo Zagreb) 4 years ago
I'm pretty sure it refers to the squad strength. It has nothing to do with the FIFA rankings or unbeaten runs. Czech Rep has a stronger squad (though not by much), so they got 2 stars
Henrywannabe (Arsenal) 4 years ago
The 'squad on paper' and 'squad strength'.... How do these terms not relate to rankings, statistics and past games/success/failures exactly?

1 star is a poor assessment of this Irish Squad but very much in keeping with the quality of this article
[account-removed] 4 years ago
After watching how we performed at the Euros I think the one star is quite flattering. Ha!

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