Home > 2011, Football, Irish Soccer, May 2011 > Do You Want To Play For Us

Do You Want To Play For Us

Tuesday 24th May 2011. Carling Nations Cup
Republic of Ireland 5-0 Northern Ireland

“Do You Want To Play For Us” echoed around an embarrassingly empty Lansdown Road stadium as Republic of Ireland inflicted a 5-0 defeat on their closest neighbours. The chant of course was in relation to the spate of Northern born players opting to declare for the Republic, much to the annoyance of North manager Nigel Worthington and the IFA (not the farmers!).

To be fair though, after the shocking performance of the North, I doubt any player would be wanted by the South!

The prematch got under way with the Northern Ireland fans booing the introduction of Presidents McAleese & McCaul. Republic fans repsonded by booing during the away anthem and as a follow up the Northern Ireland fans turned their backs while Amhrán na bhFiann was played.

The game itself was less passionate. Robbie Keane continued on his goal scoring record by notching up a goal in each half and was visibly upset at being substituted and denied an opportunity to score a hat-trick. With both teams fielding weakened sides it was a chance for players like Stephen Ward, Damien Delaney, Keith Tracey and the newly declared Simon Cox to get a run out, with Ward and Cox taking full advantage to get on the scoresheet. Former Galway United and Derry City keeper David Forde also got game time as a second half sub while stephen Hunt returned from injury to get some more minutes under his belt.

Unfortunately despite the new call ups and deput goals, all attention was on the players who, for various and contradicting reasons depending on who you listen to, didnt answer Irelands call!

But for the players who did take part, it was an annihilation on the pitch and the worst part was the empty stands. For a country that could almost sell out Croke Park for a game against Cyprus, they “officially” could only muster up just over 15,000 but that figure in itself is questionable!!!

Click Here For More Photos From Republic of Ireland v Northern Ireland

Robbie Keane composes himself while Gareth McAuley remonstrates with the linesman

Click Here For More Photos From Republic of Ireland v Northern Ireland

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