Team for Euro 2004 opening game

Discussion in 'Ireland' started by damienoftherovers, Sep 2, 2002.

  1. damienoftherovers

    damienoftherovers New Member

    Aug 20, 2002



    Any thoughts?
  2. Slash/ED

    Slash/ED New Member

    Apr 19, 2002
    If McPhail doesn't get into the Leeds team he can't get into that squad, imo, so I'd put Duffer on the left and Butler on the right. The only other problem I'd have with that defence is O'Shea and Breen, perhaps a bit to similar to play together? You'd have to try them in a friendly to see how it goes, Doherty will be going for that spot if he keeps his place for Spurs imo. Also, I reckon by then Healy will have taken over Kinsella, the problem with Kinsella is he's getting on a bit and has always had dodgy knees, he wont last as long as most mid fielders do I'm afraid and Healy will be more then ready to get in anyway. Otherwise it's a good, solid, well balanced team that really could challange for the cup itself.
  3. frankk

    frankk New Member

    Aug 29, 2002




    (it's not what i'd send out but it's what i think mccarthy will do)
  4. WishyWashy

    WishyWashy New Member

    Aug 8, 2002

    The team Mick will probably pick :

    Given (however, his peformance against Pool was worrying - injury doubt, Kiely is a fine stand-in)


    McAteer (played his way in on Saturday)

  5. closey

    closey New Member

    Jul 26, 2002
    Is Kilbane fit? Has he been dropped? Hopefully....

    Very much surprised if he does not go with Duff and Keane up front.......

    if things arent going well come 65min then watch Duff been put on the left and Doherty been brought on up front with Keane......People claimed that Ireland in comparsion to England had more energy come the later stages of matches...was the influence here that Mick changed his donkey tactics and put Duff on the wing to cause chaos come 60min???

    He may start with Clinton but I will fall out of my chair in shock if that happens......

  6. Pat Mustard

    Pat Mustard New Member

    Aug 12, 2002
    The team picked by Wishy Washy is definitely the starting line up. It may well finish with Duff on the left if we're losing during the second half but there's no chance of McCarthy taking a risk and not playing Kilbane who is essential to our defence i.e. to protect Harte who has to play because we have no other left back and because he is a major threat at set pieces. Duff's defending is diabolical.
  7. Slash/ED

    Slash/ED New Member

    Apr 19, 2002
    I thought you meant the team that would play if we qualifyed on the opening game of the Euro 2004 tournament in Portugal.....
  8. Pat Mustard

    Pat Mustard New Member

    Aug 12, 2002
    Eh, the opening game of the finals of Euro 2004 is almost two years away and before that we have the not insignificant task of qualifying for the tournament. Who knows what the team will be like in two years time, two years ago would anyone have thought Clinton Morrison would be in the current Irish squad.
  9. Don Homer

    Don Homer New Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Dublin, Ireland

    More likely that Irish players have played a good few less competitive club games in recent seasons than many of their English colleagues...

    It wasn't only Ireland that looked perky in the closing stages of games and it wasn't only England who looked tired.

    I have said this already recently, so I will not say it all again here. But McCarthy is right to be prudent in selecting his midfield, given the weaknesses in defence. There are few second chances in qualifying for international tournaments these days, so, first and foremost, it is important to be hard to beat. Once you have that achieved (and that is no easy task), then worry about getting victories.
  10. Leto

    Leto New Member

    Aug 23, 2001
    The irony is that this team has been crying out for an attacking option other than Keane and Quinn for a few years now - and now that we have a couple in Morrison and Sadlier, McCarthy won't put either of them in because he wants to play Duff there - who only got put up front in the first place against the Dutch because of the aforementioned lack of partners for Robbie Keane!! *sigh*

    I see the need for Kilbane on the left, but if we're going to keep him there then we have to put Duff on the right, possibly moving McAteer inside to be the playmaker. Duff's defending is never going to be a major part of his game, and I'd hate to think that we'll still be playing him as a striker in 3 or 4 years time.
  11. Slash/ED

    Slash/ED New Member

    Apr 19, 2002
    Either play Duff as a winger or don't play him at all. Let's face it, he's a world class winger and a world class player but as a striker he's very poor and his goal scoring record is patheitc, two goals, one in a friendly and the other as a winger against Saudi Arabia. Robbies best mate will tell you he isn't a natural goal scorer, that's not what he does, he needs one beside him, Morrison. Not every Irish team in history has to be a target man and Morrison is strong enough to play as the main striker with Keane working deep, dribbling through teams and causeing problems. Anyway, if Hartes such a cack full back that he needs to have a completley defencive minded full back on front of him why not try Kilbane left back?


    He's played there before, including the world cup. I remember in some matches he was by our corner flag making tackles, and winning them too.

    He's better in the air then Harte, though Harte is good in the air Kilbanes more commanding and does win alot of headers.

    He's much faster then Harte, so if he does get caught out of position Harte style he has the pace to make up for it.

    He's a good tackler, everyone says his main asset was his defencive cover for Ian Harte anyway.

    He's big and strong, alot harder to skin and get past then Harte.

    He's a team player so would fit into the left back slot well.

    He could still make good runs forward and help supplement the attack.


    We lose a set peice taker. So what. Despite being one of the best takers of a free kick around, he's rarely scored an important free kick for Ireland Beckham V Greece style, most of his goals of the qualifying campaign came from the spot and I think Robbie Keane proved he more then has the bottle to take over from that.

    I wish McCarthy tried that in some friendlys, it would improve us defencively and in attack and tie us over until Carr comes back and Finnan can push over there.

    Anyway, I think we proved we CAN play with Duff on the wing and Kilbane or even Harte left back in the second half of every match. The world cup was pathetically an anxious wait to see how badly we'd done in the first have and to see if our real team could pull us back in the second and Mick NEVER learned. That's true of three of our four matches and the other was against Saudi, and we we're crap in the first half anyway.
  12. Don Homer

    Don Homer New Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Dublin, Ireland
    He has tried Kevin in defence for the last 15-20 minutes of a few friendlies. He gave it a go, but he's no defender.

    Indeed, in your list of "minuses", I would put the art of defending at the very top - keeping a line, knowing when to step up or follow a player in, knowing who to pick up when you have a number of attackers making runs, knowing when to chance a run forward, etc. For me, good decision-making in a defender is probably more important than being able to win a header or time a tackle correctly. Then there is spatial awareness, concentration, etc.

    Do you honestly believe Kevin can do all these better than Ian Harte, while having Damien Duff providing limited cover in front of him?

    What this debate boils down to is managing risk. Letting Damien Duff loose on the left for 20 minutes in a game you are a goal down is an acceptable risk. Going with him there from the start in one of the most difficult matches of the campaign is a more significant gamble.

    Its easy for us backseat drivers to say "roll the dice and take your chances", but we do not have the responsibility of putting Ireland into the Euros. Ireland's fundamental weakness is in defence and our midfield must compensate for that.

    A strong defensive midfield was what won us qualification for the WC and, with the loss of Roy Keane without any obvious improvement in our back-line, are we really that much better since 12 months ago to become more expansive in our approach?

    We may be favourites, but I do not see the "you may now throw caution to the winds" sign up anywhere.

    As a final thought, Duffer had the Russian defence in knots last February. He played upfront, but did most of his damage over towards the right, including crossing for Keane's goal. They could not cope with the angles he ran at them from.
  13. WishyWashy

    WishyWashy New Member

    Aug 8, 2002
    Re: Slash/ED

    Slash, you do seem to post a lot of irrelevant nonsense. Picking a team for the opening game in Portugal 2004, what an absolutely pointless exercise!
    You also suggest not playing Duffer at all if not on the left wing. He causes serious problems when playing through the middle, he touch is superb and defenders are frightened out of their wits when he is on the ball. I'm sure he'll play lots of games for Ireland on the left, but not the opening game (which is universally regarded as the toughest in our group) away from home in a qualifying campaign for a major tournament. Clinton Morrison is just back from injury and didn't even get the full 90 minutes for Birmingham at the weekend, and he still needs more experience at international level before he can be a definite starter. Duffer has to play upfront, for now at least, as our left side would be exploited too much if he was played in front of Hartey.
    There were other points I wanted to take up with you too, but I'm just worn out now and haven't the energy to get myself back into 'reprimand mode'. Going to do a bit of work instead.
  14. Nigel_Sausagepump

    Nigel_Sausagepump New Member

    Jul 22, 2002
    Everyone seems to be banging on about playing Butler over Kilbane, or playing Kilbane at left back or starting with Clinton.

    I would say this is the worst match in the whole qualifying series to start experimenting. Fine, when Albania come to Dublin, chuck in Clinton, Butler, Healy etc, but I think this is the one match where we really need every ounce of experience we have.

    Much as I loathe Ian Harte as a player, the Harte/Kilbane axis has seen us through tougher games that this and probably should be retained for this match. That means Duff up front, who is as gifted and hugely more experienced than Clinton.

    We play Greece away in a friendly in the next couple of months...that might be a better time to see what the new recruits are made of.
  15. WishyWashy

    WishyWashy New Member

    Aug 8, 2002
    Nigel Sausagepump said "Everyone seems to be banging on about playing Butler over Kilbane, or playing Kilbane at left back or starting with Clinton".

    - I think you'll find that I have not. In fact, in a rather worrying development (and not for the first time recently), you seem to be agreeing almost entirely with my point of view on the matter of team selection.
    The one difference I do see is in your loathing of Hartey as a player. He may well frighten the bejaysus out of me too at times, but he is not the worst man ever to pull on the green jersey (answers on a postcard etc.). He was completely out of sorts at the World Cup and his confidence was completely shot, but he has done well for us in the past. I hope that Stephen Carr gets back to fitness soon and also than Finnan can move over to left back successfully, but until that time Hartey is still our best option. Too many people look forward to bashing his performance even before a game. Some even came on here saying he was rubbish in the Finland game, just because it became a habit for them, when he had actually done quite well, and certainly made no more errors than any of the others. A free kick into the top corner would be just the ticket on Saturday.
    Now I really better go and do something for my employers.
  16. Nigel_Sausagepump

    Nigel_Sausagepump New Member

    Jul 22, 2002
    Ah, don't get too worried about it Wishy. I'm sure we'll come to an amicable disagreement in the not too distant future.

    I just don't think there's much sense debating team line up for the Russia match, because everyone knows exactly what team will be put out.

    Its the later matches where there could be some variation.

    Then we can get stuck into each other (as such)again!
  17. Plastic Paddy

    Plastic Paddy New Member

    Aug 5, 2002
    Hammersmith, London
    I think Wishy's mellowing... ;)

    :D PP - Senator George Mitchell RISC
  18. Slash/ED

    Slash/ED New Member

    Apr 19, 2002
    First half preformances in the world cup

    0-1 Cameroon, and we we're pretty awful.

    0-1 Germany and they we're the better side.

    1-0 Saudi, the worst team in the world cup actually we're the better side towards the end

    0-1 Spain, we we're destroyed and but some bad positional sense from their strikers we'd have been 3 down.

    Second half preformances in the world cup.

    1-0 Cameroon, we destroyed them, Keane hit the post and we should have won

    1-0 Germany, we created the majority of chances and Kahn saved them a few times, on another day we would have won

    2-0 Saudi, showed our superiority and bossed them off the park, hit two and could have had more.

    1-0 Spain, including extra time we destroyed them, had them on the back foot and should have won.

    What was the difference between those games? Duff played on the wing and we put a proper striker up front. Duff doesn't scare defences as a forward, looking at his goal scoring record I'd be pretty happy defending against him with him getting the ball with his back to goal and not being able to dribble, but he would scare me to death as a winger. Dean Kiely is a great keeper, should we try and accomdate him in centre mid field because he's so good despite the fact that it will be a disadvantage to the team? no, and we shouldn't accomdate Duff up front because Mick likes Kilbanes defencive qualities better, he's NOT a good striker, doesn't create and doesn't score like he would on the wing.

    Leeds are a top premiership side and they can afford to play Kewell left wing who has no defencive qualities, or even now they've no winger at all protecting Harte, we're better off with Kelly/Carr and Finnan in the full back positions, Finnan has a great left foot and is a former left winger and is certinally a million times better then Harte, we wouldn't need to put Kilbane on front of him just to protect him because he's so out of debt at international level. That's not good enough.

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