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Euro 2012

From Russia with a Point

With the European Championship in France approaching ever faster, Adam Murphy takes a look back at one of the best individual performances seen in a green shirt in recent times. It didn’t come in a major tournament, however, rather a cold September evening in Moscow in the Euro 2012 qualifiers. Continue reading →

Squad Rotation: A Year of Change

Statistics released this week show Ireland with the fourth highest representation of footballers in the Premier League and, with the new season just starting, international boss Giovanni Trapattoni was able to name ten top flight players in his team to face Wales. This time a year ago, however, his squad was reeling from a disastrous European Championship. The manager has stuck to his word and overhauled the playing staff but for the team that lined out against Italy last summer, much has changed in just 12 months. Continue reading →

Ireland v Spain: View from the Other Side

While Irish fans try to wipe the mauling by Spain from their memories, Tuesday’s opponents in New York still talk about the support of the Green Army in Gdansk. La Liga football writer and editor of Madrid Atléticos, Garreth Nunn gives us the view from the other side ahead of the Republic’s final match of the season against the world and European champions. Continue reading →

Passage of Play: Stephen Hunt

“I was pissed off, 100pc. Angry, yes. Heartbroken, yes. But no, I never thought about not wanting to play…Trapattoni has his ways. He’s stubborn. But I do like him and I think he is the right man for the job and that’s coming from a person who didn’t play at the Euros” Continue reading →

Trap’s Crimes They Are a Changin’

We went to the pub early for the Euro 2012 game with Italy. It was empty. They’ll remain that way for our first World Cup qualifier with Kazakhstan. Giovanni Trapattoni’s insistence on sticking with the same players and tactics means an Irish game has scarcely been met with such indifference. And yet, history suggests Trap’s team will change. Continue reading →

Claws Out: The Cat is in Kazakh

Kazakhstan is a long way to go for redemption. It’s about as far away from Poznan as you can get. Still licking the wounds from the summer, Trapattoni’s Ireland are cat-hunting again but, criticised for his unwillingness to change, if perfomances don’t improve, the claws will be out. Continue reading →

Where Have the Best Fans in The World Gone?

About three weeks ago Poland’s men’s volleyball team crashed out of the Olympic Games at the quarter-final stage. Odds on for the gold medal, their failure sparked a tidal wave of criticism at home. The debate soon turned to discussion of the Irish football fans as the Polish asked why they coudn’t follow the example set by the Green Army at Euro 2012. We wonder if they’d ask the same question this week. Continue reading →

“Did Jack Have a Trial With Liverpool?”

“Did Jack have a trial with Liverpool?” “No Dougal, he was on trial, in Liverpool.” In 2011, Fr. Ted was voted Channel 4’s funniest ever comedy beating the likes of Peep Show, The IT Crowd and The Inbetweeners. It reminded us how the iconic series was the inspiration for some of the best Irish flags at Euro 2012, and in a sense paid fitting tribute to avid football fan, the late great Dermot Morgan. Continue reading →

Given, the Greatest, Hangs Up Gloves

He sat ringside at London’s ExCel Arena. Around him, thousands of green-clad Irish were in raptures creating a cauldron of noise as Ireland’s sporting superstar, Kate Taylor, powered to Olympic gold. As he hangs up his gloves, trying to replace Shay Given could prove a knock-out blow to our future qualifying hopes. Continue reading →

Why Andy Carroll Isn’t as Sh*te as Everyone Thinks

With Andy Carroll looking like he may be on his way out of Anfield, is it fair to describe his time at Liverpool as a flop? A return to Newcastle seems imminent but to portray it as slinking back with his tail between his legs would be unfair to the rangy striker. As Ireland found out in Gdansk, trying to fill the gaps left by Fernando Torres can leave you isolated. Continue reading →

Trap, Are You Being Serbed?

Could this be the most important squad announcement of Giovanni Trapattoni’s reign as Irish manager? There have been far more important games but this Irish side is at a cross-roads. A new avenue awaits but it will involve new faces and a manager willing to alter his philosophy to lead us on the rocky road to Rio. Continue reading →

50 Grades of Shay

If report-cards were being handed out for the Irish players coming home from Euro 2012, there’d be a few large F’s and plenty of black marks against names. Former star pupil Shay Given also seemed to suffer from the class clowns around him. Continue reading →

R.E.S.P.E.C.T. Find Out Why You’re Mean to Me

Back to reality. As Euro 2012 builds to a climax, the last camper-van has long since pulled out of Poland but the Irish have left a lasting impression. The whole world saw the pictures from Gdansk and the word repeated again and again from fans around the globe was ‘respect.’ How shameful then, that Irish supporters should encounter such a lack of it at home. Continue reading →

Euro 88 – Where Are They Now?

They were the pioneers. After decades of heartache, the Republic of Ireland appeared at a major football finals for the first time in 1988. Twenty-four years on, we’re back, but many of Jack’s original Boys in Green can still be seen on our TV screens as pundits. Póg Mo Goal takes an offside look back and asks; the heroes of Euro ’88, where are they now? Continue reading →

A Song for Europe – Come on Ireland

Stephen Ward’s shot had barely nestled in the Estonian net before Ireland’s lyricists, songsters, singsters, and gangsters were penning Euro 2012 anthems. Like a young Larry Gogan spinning discs, Póg Mo Goal brings you our Song for Europe series. Bang em on a mix-tape and stick em in the camper-van cassette player. Next up is a version of Come on Eileen – Come on Ireland – by the Buachaill Boys. Continue reading →

Hungary Like the Wolf

Foley-gate may be no more with Giovanni Trapattoni firmly drawing a line under the subject but there are a few more faces in the Irish squad who could face tough conversations with the manager after Monday’s final warm-up game with Hungary. Players like Kevin Doyle and Stephen Hunt have some work to do in Budapest or they may find themselves down the pecking order come the showdown with Croatia just six days later. Continue reading →

Double the Odds with Setantabet

Setantabet.com has raised the stakes, quite literally, for the 2012 European Championships which kick off in just over a week’s time. The online bookmaker has announced that it will pay out double the odds on all winning Euro 2012 outright bets if the Republic of Ireland qualify from their group and advance to the knockout stage. Continue reading →

Montecatini Hills Chop: Axed Foley Cops Cruel Blow

The Kevin Foley saga has cast the first cloud over Ireland’s Euro 2012 preparations. The Wolves defender confirmed he wouldn’t be staying on to watch the campaign from the sidelines, now that he has been cut loose from the squad. Yet decades of experience have thought Giovanni Trapattoni there can be no room for sentiment. With three ferocious battles ahead for the Green Army, all’s fair in love and football. Continue reading →

Preview: Who’s the Bos?

And so it begins. Ireland’s great adventure back on the European stage kicks into action with the first pre-tournament friendly against Bosnia & Herzegovina in Dublin. When we took our seats at the old Lansdowne Road ten years ago to send Ireland on their way to the Far East with a farewell game against Nigeria, who would have believed it would be a decade before we would be back at football’s top table? Continue reading →

The Saipan Incident – Part 4

With the tenth anniversary of Irish football’s civil war upon us, Póg Mo Goal brings you Part 4, the penultimate extract from John Kiberd’s astonishing body of work on the subject, focusing on the fall-out and player’s reaction from Keane’s infamous tirade. This is the Saipan Incident. Continue reading →

Pedal to Poland

Everyone loves a good sing song on the terraces. So in honour of all the great songs being written to support the Irish team this summer at Euro 2012 the Pedal to Poland charity team are hosting the Football Eurovision Song Contest tonight, Tuesday, in The Grand Social, Dublin. Continue reading →