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Monday, 23 November 2009

How did the unlucky Ireland team get on after World Cup elimination?

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There was much talk of dropping Irish players who were not mentally fit to play after the Paris rollercoaster; but in the end most of the hard-bitten Ireland players turned out. Not everyone was sympathetic to their plight, with Roy Keane especially scathing. But with a replay now not likely - how did the Ireland players fare?

Shay Given was not overly taxed in a 2-2 draw for Manchester City at Anfield, Liverpool only hitting the target four times.

Manchester United's John O'Shea was injured in the Ireland game, but will be buoyed by Sir Alex Ferguson's comments that he is a candidate to be the next United captain.

Birmingham born Seán St Ledger played the 90 minutes in Middlesbrough's 1-1 draw with Nottingham Forest on Saturday's Championship match.

Richard Dunne consoled Thierry Henry in Paris (perhaps it should have been the other way round?) and was thought to be unready to play at the weekend, but played a full game and was booked as Aston Villa drew at Burnley.

Preston born Kevin Kilbane hasn't played for Hull City for over a month now.

Stoke's Liam Lawrence (another Englishman) came on as a second half substitute in Stoke's 1-0 win against Portsmouth in the Premier League. Dubliner Glenn Whelan was an unused substitute for Stoke.

Keith Andrews was an unused substitute for Blackburn Rovers, who beat Bolton 2-0 in the Premier League.

Fulham dropped Damien Duff to the bench, and he was unable to make a difference after coming on for the last 16 minutes of their 1-0 defeat at Birmingham.

Kevin Doyle was not in the Wolves matchday squad against Chelsea and hasn't played for them since 7 November.

Robbie Keane was another left on the bench as Tottenham ran riot in a 9-1 win against Wigan.

Rep of Ireland: Given, O'Shea, St. Ledger, Dunne, Kilbane, Lawrence, Whelan, Andrews, Duff, Doyle, Keane. Subs: Joe Murphy, McGeady, McShane, Kelly, Gibson, Hunt, Best.

Starting XI: Three started (Given, Dunne and St. Ledger), two came on a substitutes (Duff and Lawrence). Of the five who played, one was in a winning side, three drew and one lost.

How did the evil France team fare after Henrygate?

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Antony Melvin



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