Rep of Ireland v Armenia

Rep of Ireland v Armenia

IT Tue, Oct 11
 

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  • 18:21
    Evening all, it's an early start, but it's been a long time since the Berkeley Court and surrounding areas have been so thronged with 'expectant' fans. The fact that none of them seem to agree on what to expect is a concern but there's definitely an atmosphere that hasn't been experienced hereabouts for some time.
  • 18:27

    REPUBLIC OF IRELAND: Given (Aston Villa); O’Shea (Sunderland), St Ledger (Leicester City), Dunne (Aston Villa), Kelly (Fulham); Duff (Fulham), Andrews (Ipswich Town), Whelan (Stoke City), McGeady (Spartak Moscow); Cox (West Brom), Doyle (Wolves). 

    ARMENIA: Berezovski (FC Khimki, Russia); Hayrapetyan (Lechia, Poland), Mkoyan (FC Mika), Aleksanyan (Sanat Naft, Iran), Hovsepyan (Pyunik); Mkrtchyan (Metallurg Donetsk), Malakyan (Pyunik); Mkhitaryan (Shaktar Donetsk), Pizelli (Metallurg Donetsk), Ghazaryan (Metallurg Donetsk); Movsisyan (FC Krasnodor, Russia). 

    Referee: Eduardo Gonzalez (Spain) 

  • 18:32
    Carl O'Malley here at the Aviva. As if it hasn't been stressed enough in recent days, that Armenia team is pretty handy and anything less than a point here for Ireland will end another campaign in bitter disappointment.

    Conversely, another clean sheet, which would be Ireland's ninth on the trot will see Giovanni's men into the play-offs and most of us would have taken that at the start, even if it did mean sitting through 900 minutes of the most turgid football imaginable to man.
  • 18:34
    Tom Dunne has given up the day job to MC pre-match proceedings. No nudey pens on offer yet, but there is hardly a clamour. Despite the aforementioned atmosphere outside the stadium, people do appear to have been slow to take their seats and we're a long way off capacity as it stands.
  • 18:39

    This is how things stand in Group B prior to kick-off. Barring an apocalytic collapse on the part of Russia, who host Andorra, the best we can hope for is a play-off. Whether we enter that as top seeds or not depends on how many points we garner from tonight. But a draw would complicate that.

    Here's Mary Hannigan's far more detailed and learned take on the whole issue.

  • 18:40
    The teams are out and the president is on her way. Oh, how we'll miss her when she's been replaced by one of the rabble in line to succeed her. Quite a roar but still plenty of seats to be filled here.
  • 18:43
    A rather jaunty Molly Malone rendition from the garda band there as she meets and greets the players. Some nostalgic footage from Italy 90 to stir the blood. Really setting the tone here, the FAI. And now the anthems.  
  • 18:43
    jonno whoa re the subs?
  • 18:45
    Sorry, Jonno. A strong bench. Westwood, Coleman, Walters, Long, Hunt, Fahey and O'Dea.

    Very attack minded. One wonders would this be the best time to ask some of these players to produce, considering they hae barely been used so far in the campaign.
  • 18:45
    Good gravy! Quite a roar went up there as the anthem rolled to a conclusion. We're getting there in terms of a crowd but there are still plenty of empty seats.
  • 18:47
    Shayzer and Sargis Hosvepyan flick a coin. Not sure who came out on top but it's as you were with Ireland playing towards the north end.
  • 18:47
    1 min: Armenia tip off.
  • 18:48
    1 min: Dunne heads the first ball clear up to Duff, who wins a throw. He and Keane combine and he swings in a cross that's too deep for Doyle.
  • 18:49
    2 min: Kelly has started at left-back. Confirmation of that strange call to leave O'Shea on the right.The latter clears up well as Armenia probe but his ball doesn't find Cox.
  • 18:51
    3 min: Ireland force a throw in courtesy of a misplaced pas but Armenia defend it and Henrikh Mkhitaryan (THE DANGERMAN) has a run at the defence but pulls his shot wide of Given's goal.
  • 18:52
    jonno who's keane?
  • 18:53
    Keane is the guy who's not playing, jonno. Do keep up. Sorry, Cox
  • 18:53
    Corner Armenia , taken short and then cleared by Andrews for another.
  • 18:55
    7 min: Headed clear at the near post this time but throw in to Armenia. Ghazaryan goes down under McGeady's challenge but it's a free out and Given clears long. Andrews looked to have got the ball off Mkhitryan but it's a free in. Comes to nothing.

    Quelle surpise! Russia have scored.
  • 18:57
    Fairly decent noise out of this crowd now as the first chorus of C'mon YBIG goes up. Duffe gets down the right but his low cross is hacked clear
  • 18:58
    10 min: Cox looks for a free off Mkrtchyan but Senor Gonzalez is having none of it.
  • 18:59

    Corner after Whelan nicked the ball in the middle and Cox took it on. Shifted to Duff who's cross is deflected. Corner is fisted clear.

  • 19:01

    Great chance. Cox does great to take down the flick on from Doyle and find his strike partner again. His left foot shot is saved from 12 yards. A bit tame but good link up play and Cox might have got a shot away had it fallen for him. He's looked lively.

  • 19:02
    14 min: Stephen Kelly has been yellow carded for a late tackle. That's not ideal.
  • 19:04
    16 min: Sneaky little reverse pass from Duff to Doylem but the danger is cleared by Armenia
  • 19:05
    Back with Given who looks to launch another one long. Again Doyle gets a head on it and Cox has gone down. The ref frantically waves treatment on but he looks okay. Got a boot in the head as his marker came down from a defensive header.

    On the plus side that's about the fourth time Doyle has cleanly beaten his man in the air.
  • 19:06
    Brave headers from Dunne and then O'Shea sees the latter earn a free.
  • 19:08
    Humped long to Doyle who wins it again but the ensuing hack sack results in Armenia clearing their lines. 20 mins gone now and Ireland have looked comfortable at the back but need more cohesion going forward and a little less panic on the ball. Nothing new there then.
  • 19:10

    A bit more patience on the ball sees Duff, McGeady and then Kelly get on the ball, but the full-backs cross is too close to the keeper for Cox, though he challenges gamely.

  • 19:11
    The ball is in the net, somehow, but it's a free out. Not shown a replay yet but Cox is baffled and the keeper was on the ground for a while, Can anyone help with that one?
  • 19:12
    25 min: Movisyan has a pop from way out on the right handside. Given watches it go well wide.
  • 19:14

    Red card for goalkeeper Berezovsky!! Cox runs on to a long ball and does really well to try and lift it over the keeper who puts his hands up outside the box and blocks it wi thi his hands.

  • 19:16
    Whispers in the press box that Cox might have controlled it with his hand and it may have hit the keepers chest. I can't confirm that because I'm typing for YOU and not watching replays.

    None other than Pat Fenlon says Cox handled it. That's good enough for me.

    Russia 2-0 up by the way.
  • 19:16
    Free in for Ireland, just inside the D.
  • 19:18
    McGeady hits it just over the bar. Sub keeper Arsen Petrosyan is on for Edgar Malakyan.

    31 min: Dunne shepherds it out of play under pressur and Ireland go on the offsensive as Duff wins another corner.
  • 19:20
    McGeady is robbed onthe right handside and Armenia break. Movisyan puts in a dangerous ball but seeing as he's the guy supposed to meet them, there is nobody in the middle. Not the first time McGeady has given away possession sloppily.
  • 19:20
    33 min: Cox has a shot from distance but fails to catch hold of it.
  • 19:21
    McGeady dispossessed on the left again. They are doubling up on the Spartak Moscow man to great effect so far.
  • 19:23
    Armenia stroking it around with n'er a bother in the world but a combinaton of McGeady, Kelly and St LEdger eventually crowd out Hovsepyan. 
  • 19:25
    Marcos Pizelli manufactures a shot cleverly but his effort is well wide despite being solidly struck. Ireland are actually ceding ground since the sending off.
  • 19:26
    38 min: Smashing tackle by O'Shea on Movisyan.
  • 19:27
    Ireland go long through O'Shea. Again. It comes to nothing. Again. Andrews was available. Again
  • 19:28
    40 min: Mkhitryan runs at Ireland but it's down a dead end. Appeals for a penalty/free are waved away.
  • 19:29
    Duff looks for space to shoot and he hits one pretty true from about 25 yards but it finds an Armenian arse
  • 19:31

    GOAL: 43 min: This Irish team gets luckier and luckier. Duff gets to the byline and Doyle misses his back heel. But never fear, there's Aleksanyan to boot it into his own net.

  • 19:32
    It gets worse for Armenia as sub keeper Petrosyan claims the ball but slides out of the box with it in his hands. Yellow card. McGeady's low free to towards the penalty box is cleared easily.
  • 19:33
    2 mins added on at the end of the half. Free in for Armenia, within range.
  • 19:34
    Movisyan over it and over it goes. It's not been Armenia's most memorable 45 minutes.
  • 19:35
    Any thoughts on any of this? Anybody? Bueller? There're well over 200 of you out there, right now. Say something. Stop mocking me!!
  • 19:36

    Halftime.

    S'up John, s'up Edward!

    Presidential candidates 2032

  • 19:38
    Quite an eventful half then and Ireland are currently on course for the play-offs, courtesy of a comical own goal. Poor fella had nobody around him but couldn't resist bulging that net.

    Ireland have been lively but have undoubtedly got a huge slice of luck at a time when they appeared to be losing a bit of their grip on the game.
  • 19:38
    PaulH Where in the world is Armenia anyway? Is it near Shoulderenia?
  • 19:39

    How very humerus.

  • 19:39
    Guest feel i just have to comment - loved the "arse" comment, and generally love the live-tickers - great job!
  • 19:42
    You're one of the good ones, Guest.

    That guy who does the pre-match preamble and the halftime 'entertainment' is screaming again. I wonder does he sit down with his wife in the evening and say: HEY, BABY, HOW WAS YOUR DAY? WHAT'S FOR DINNER?' (Before getting her name wrong) 
  • 19:42
    nichole I have to say as someone stuck in work late..this is more fun than listening to my co-workers
  • 19:43
    Yeah, but you could work in a library or with accountants.
  • 19:44
    Ciaran Yep. Great commentary. Much better than Eurosport. Keep it up for the second half
  • 19:44
    Claudio Crow Oh, that joke was armpit-iful.
  • 19:45
    David Freeman Nice work, stuck here in Serbia and this is the most active min by min commentary I can find, Armenians to finish with no goalkeepers !
  • 19:45
    nichole work in IT, so worse than working for boring accountants
  • 19:46

    Ouch, my sympathies.

  • 19:46
    Ciaran is it just me or is anyone else just a little disinterested in all this. We've played all these games just to a chance of a playoff which might get us into Euro 2012? Is it worth it like?
  • 19:48

    I'm interested. Just. Ah, no, I'm dying to get to another finals. Sure, they're great. I just wish we had a hope of doing something when we are there.

  • 19:48
    PaulH So how is it shaping up if this score remains the same who are Ireland likely to meet in the playoffs?
  • 19:49

    It will become clearer in a while PaulH, but at this stage I think the four second seeds are Bosnia, Czech Republic, Turkey and Montenegro. We should be a first seed if we win. There are permutations though. See HERE for details.

  • 19:50
    We're back.
  • 19:50
    PaulH @Ciaran, sure it's worth! I could mean holidays in Ukraine next summer! Woohoo! ;-)
  • 19:51
    Armenia on to the front foot and Movisyan turns and shoots in the box. All a little too easy there but Given gathers.
  • 19:51
    47 min: Cox runs the channel and turns his man in the box. Does well to tee up Doyle but his shot is blocked and gathered by the keeper. Good work from the Baggies substitute.
  • 19:52
    Movisyan looks the most likely to make this awkward tonight. He's been very determined and tricky all night.
  • 19:52
    nichole not too sure I would get excited about vacation in the Ukraine
  • 19:53
    More exciting than working in IT.
  • 19:53
    Claudio Crow I know, Ciaran, sometimes after spending the whole evening trying to get lucky with a girl when I finally reach that moment of contentment I look back and think, 'was it all worthy'? Oh, actaully, I don't.
  • 19:54
    Cox again shows quick feet to turn his man but stretching for the shot he fails to make clean contact and it's cleared. Impressed with him tonight.
  • 19:54
    David Freeman If we were told Ciaran at the start that we would be still in with winning the group on the last night we would have taken it, am all for play-offs, the Ireland v France weeklong session in 2 cities despite the result was one of the best few days I ever had,still smiling at the lad who scaled the Moulin Rouge from a scaffold,stuck an Irish flag on the moving windmill and got nicked,
  • 19:55

    You saw that?! Good times.

  • 19:57
    Ireland putting on the pressure now, especially down the left with Kelly, Duff and Cox. Kelly gets in behind the full-back but is tackled just as he shapes to shoot.
  • 19:57
    Throw in is shifted by Cox to Andrews whose shot rattled the side netting. Cox is involved in everything.
  • 19:59
    54 min and my TV is on the fritz. Does hitting them still work?

    Yes, yes it does.

    Mkhrityan breaks and Armenia win a corner off O'Shea. Comfortably dealt with, though. 

  • 19:59
    Ciaran @Claudio and @DavidFreeeman Very funny. Ok, point taken about the craic. Gotta go to bed folks. it's almost 11pm here and am up at 6am. Enjoy. Keep up the great commentaries!
  • 20:03

    58 min: Slowed down a bit now, but Kelly is still pushing on in an unusual departure from Trapattoni tactics. Cox is whistled for bundling over a defender and nicking the ball. Could have gone either way.

    The forward then plays a lovely one two with Andrews but is tackled just as he is about to shoot from seven yards. Lovely play. Cox deserves a goal.

  • 20:04
    GOAL! There it is, but it's the Honey Monster after he came barrelling in to connect with McGeady's cross after mad keeper number two failed to gather what looked a routine ball.
  • 20:04
    PaulH There's loads of stuff to see in the Ukraine for your holidays (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ukraine#Tourism) - all that can spoil it now is losing the next couple of matches, that is if they don't lose this one first. C'mon Ireland! Ukraine awaits! :-)
  • 20:06

    GOAL! Don't book yisser tickets yet. Mkhitaryan has got one back after being found on the edge of the box bu Movisyan. That was sloppy from all concerned. Given included, but the shot should never have got there in the first place.

  • 20:07
    Ciaran Tell me there's an iPhone app for this commentary! The Honey Monster?! Pure class!
  • 20:08

    Ah, tha's an oldy.

    64 min: Duff breaks and finds Cox but his mercilessly chopped down as he looks for the return. Yellow card. Back with Ireland and Doyle flicks to Cox whose shot is out for a corner.

  • 20:09
    It's cleared by Armenia but back with Ireland and Given leathers it up there.

    A collective 'ooooooh' goes around the Aviva as McGeady earns a yellow for a high foot.
  • 20:10
    66 min:  Tidy stuff down the left from Armenia and Movisyan again finds space in the box but his shot is well wide after he teed up nicely.
  • 20:12
    At the other end, it's a really tame effort from McGeady who had time to tee it up after Duff broke but his toe poke was never going to do the job. That's his last act as 'Rocky' comes on to bring a bit of chaos to the right wing.
  • 20:12
    Ciaran Ok, now am def off to bed, just want to point out that even though Armenia are a man down, and we are winning, they have scored more goals than us tonight! :)
  • 20:12
    This is true.
  • 20:14
    Corner Armenia after Mkrtchyan's shot is deflected wide and it's headed over the bar at teh backpost. . Ireland need to be careful here.
  • 20:15
    71 min: Incidentally Doyle has been yellow carded after a bad tackle a few moments ago and will miss the first play-off, IF we get there. There'll be no chicken counting on my watch.
  • 20:18

    Sub Artur Sarkisov tries his luck from 45 yards with Given off his line. Not bad vision but he's no Xabi Alonso.

    74 min: Hunty does well down the left as he seeks to inject a bit of life back into Ireland.

  • 20:18
    Pie Indaskie I have lots of chickens counting on their next snack. Ah, you mean chicken-counting.
  • 20:20
    76 min: Movisyan again gets too much space but Dunne blocks his shot.

    Keith 'Fats' Fahey is on for Glenn Whelan.
  • 20:21
    Climbs well for a header for his first touch and then makes a timely clearance in the box with his second. Good start there from the Birmingham player.
  • 20:23
    79 min: Hunt is whistled for a typically misunderstood challenge and Jonathan Walters is coming on for.....
  • 20:24
    Simon Cox. Great game from Coxy, it has to be said. Vindicated his manager's decision and gets a standing ovation.
  • 20:25
    RED CARD! Well, I thought he should have taken Doyle off and he shoulda. Another yellow for the Wolves man for a clumsy challenge. Still misses just one game, I think.
  • 20:26
    Pie Indaskie Whittle down to size?
  • 20:28
    Whistled, sorry. Chuck Norris couldn't whittle Hunty down to size.

    As I say that, Hunty gets whittled down to size by Armenian defence but much to the home fans' chagrin he only gets a corner after keeper clears him out of it. Defender looked to have got the slightest touch on the ball though.
  • 20:29
    Corner comes to nothing, but Ireland still have possession. Good spell and Walters gets a sight of goal but his shot is straight at panicky idiot keeper number two in the Armenian net.
  • 20:29
    Eamonn: Denmark Why does Ireland always do this to us,we the supporters always stand fully behind our team, and we get this kind of shit in return. Why can't they just do the job without a helping hand ie: own goal , a man sent off and they still can't get to grips with the game on hand.......
  • 20:29
    PaulH Why oh why are the last 15 minutes of matches involving Ireland the nerviest!
  • 20:29
    You guys should meet up.
  • 20:30
    85 min:  Ireland have responded well here and Walters has broguht a little bit of physicality up front with gaps in behind the Armenian defence as they push on.
  • 20:32
    Four minutes left. Armenia need two to endear themselves to us forever. Given gathers a cross and their latest foray fizzles out.
  • 20:32
    Hunt finds Walters behind the full back. His shot from distance is well hit but well wide.
  • 20:32
    Pie Indaskie Why does Ireland abuse us like this? Because we are dumb enough to pay attention. Must be some tribal conditioning. Wish it would stop.
  • 20:32
    Pie Indaskie Armenian people are asking themselves the same question.
  • 20:33
    Guest Nice action chief...Looking good from Troon!
  • 20:33
    Wayhay, big yin! Bout ye!?
  • 20:33
    PaulH That's my brother Eamonn in Denmark. Eamonn, I'm driven to the Ukraine next summer to follow glorious Ireland in the Euro finals. I'll pick you up on the way there! ;-)
  • 20:35
    Simon Cox gets man of the match as 'Stand up for the Boys in Green' rings out.

    Back on the pitch, Given is forced to clear a low cross with this feet and Fahey heads clear.

    4 minutes added time.
  • 20:35
    David Freeman Panicky Idiot Keeper ' ...like it, that reminds me , we have the premiership back on Saturday thank God
  • 20:36
    Carnival time here now as the YBIG crowd to my right do an inverse Poznan. That is jumping around with turning around.
  • 20:37
    93 min: Armenia keep probing but there looks to be nothing left in them at this stage. A free in is headed clear by O'Shea and then a free out is awarded for a push.
  • 20:38
    Niall Is there a football match on?
  • 20:38
    Hunty chases into the corner and that's it!! Play-off place is secured!!
  • 20:39
    Deserved win in the end, not without it's fair share of luck, mind, but the job is done and now we await a seeding and draw on Thursday. I want France. It's payback.
  • 20:40
    Tom Dunne gets Shay on the pitch. "Thanks for your support, we need it next month and hopefully......something or other." 
  • 20:41
    Guest love the blog, but that b****** of an ad that keeps rolling out over it is driving me insane!
  • 20:41

    Mental note taken. Thanks for reading folks, gotta go and do some real work. Match report and quotes up here soon. Slán for now.

  • 22:04
    David Freeman Good work, will be back here again...God knows where ?
  • 22:04
    Claudio Crow Time to leave you all - slán go foill, all the way from Brazil
  • 22:41