Republic of Ireland manager Martin O’Neill was proud of his players’ efforts but clearly upset despite at failing to qualify for the World Cup on a sad night for Irish football, writes Ger McCarthy.
“We were well beaten in the end, no question about that,” commented the Irish manager to RTÉ’s Tony O’Donoghue.
“Got off to a great start, maybe James chance might have made a big, big difference in the game. However, we conceded two real sloppy goals in a couple of minutes and it was a long way back after that.
“I don’t know about psychology but the two goals we conceded were so, so sloppy. We should still be able to clear the ball and haven’t been able to do that. The next goal is a comedy of mistakes. In a game of such importance, the whole mindset changes when you are 2-1 down inside a couple of minutes when perhaps you might have been 2-0 up.”
“We have to try and create something so obviously you are going to keep (Daryl) Murphy on at centre forward and try and get something into the penalty area. You are hoping Wes might be able to work something for us and the same for McGeady.
“As for taking off our two central midfielders, well that’s the name of the game, we had to go for it and not die wondering. We had had to try and get two goals back and that’s not easy.”