As we reach the half way point in the qualifying campaign for France 2016 we look over the Top 5 video highlights from Ireland’s Group D adventures so far.
1) Ole, O’Shea, Ole, O’Shea, Ole, O’Shea
With Aiden McGeady’s dancing feet as competition it would have to take something supremely special to knock them off the top spot. But John O’Shea last minute intervention against the German’s was that because it was hard to see an Ireland equaliser coming. But the Irish are nothing if determined as exemplified by centre back, a centurion on the night, John O’Shea who refused to give up on pulling Ireland back from extinction. His flick was a thing of beauty and quite a few of us almost broke bodily parts in the ensuing pandemonium.
- John O’Shea’s Goal v Germany: The RTE Commentary
- John O’Shea’s Goal v Germany: The Fans Reaction
2) Aiden and Abetting On Moments of Genius
While Ireland have slowly found a groove in this qualifying campaign if you look back to the performance in our first game away to Georgia you’ll have been struck by how disjointed it all was. Once we were pegged back by that Okriashvili thunderbolt it looked as if we were never going to score, that was until Aiden McGeady stepped up in an act that seemingly defied the laws of gravity before driving an unstoppable arrow into the corner of the net. Time stood still and it all happened so fast it seemed like celebrating was the wrong thing to do. Thankfully logic goes out the window in these situations and thankfully the sitting room ceiling was replastered within the week.
3) It’s Not Such A Long Way From Auxerre To Here
It what was fast becoming a tradition for Ireland to leave it late in our Group D games before pulling it out of the fire. At home against Poland in March the 4th official had already flagged how many extra minutes were going to be added before Shane Long chipped in with an invaluable goal to level matters with our rivals Poland. Sweet relief when it seemed as if the curtains had come down on our hopes to reach the Euros.
- Poor Quality Video of Long’s Goal, go to RTE here for better quality
- Shane Long’s Goal v Poland: The Fans Reaction
4) The McClean Sweep
With James going McClean through him Polish forward Arkadiusz Milik had no idea what had just happened. The Aviva crowd did however, as did his teammates around him with the Derry force of nature grabbing Ireland by the scruff of the neck and ultimately back into the contest.
- He Didn’t See McClean For Dust
5) Keano Keeps The Ball Again
Captain fantastic is often between a rock and a hard place (! read on) in the affections of the Irish support but he showed us what a genius he is by dispatching little Gibraltar within the first 18 minutes of their visit to Lansdowne Road. His detractors will ultimately point to UEFA’s newest recruits lack of experience at this level but how many times in the past have we watched Ireland wither on the vine of inferior opposition.
- Author: Kevin Dunphy