Euro 2012 Live

Euro 2012 Live

IT Thu, Jun 14

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  • 16:04
    It appears Giovanni Trapattoni can add meteorology to his long list of talents, for the rain has drifted into Gdansk just in time to grease the pitch at the PGE Arena in Gdansk ahead of tonight’s second Euro 2012 Group C game against Spain (7.45pm).

    The Italian was asked yesterday whether he would agree to surface getting a watering – he has every right not to - and he deflected the question with a weather forecast that rendered the point moot.

    He was also asked for a team but that was not forthcoming, for the first time in his four year tenure, leading many to speculate what he has up his sleeve.
    Rumours were abound this morning and afternoon that Simon Cox would be drafted into the starting line-up between captain Robbie Keane and the usual midfield. That word came from a reputable source but the nature of the change has still made some sceptical as to whether the Italian would depart that far from his well-worn script.

    And so, once again, a nation holds its breath.

    For this adventure to continue the Republic of Ireland need to avoid defeat when the take on Spain in around four hours time. It's about as hard as it gets, really, the reigning world and European champions stand in the way and there is no escaping the suspicion the odds of 12-1 on an Ireland win are actually a little tight.

    But we are where we are and anything less than a point will render next Monday’s final pool encounter against the Italians meaningless. Stay with me, Carl O'Malley, on as we take you through the ups (hopefully) and downs of the next six hours.
  • 16:14
    The teams are in for the other game in the Group tonight, Italy against Croatia at (5pm Irish time). You can follow the live matchtracker HERE
  • 16:39
    There are no changes on either team, with Mario Balotelli set to start again despite his replacement Antonio Di Natale scoring against Spain within minutes of arriving on the pitch last Sunday. 

    Di Natale does not train and is carrying a permanent injury, we think to his Achilles, so that is not entirely surprising. Still, the boy's done well to be top scorer in Italy for the last two seasons.
  • 17:10
    True to form, the wifi in the uefa media tent is appalling. There are rows and rows of journalists mashing their keyboards furiously in the vain hope of respite from a technological nightmare. 

    If there's any crowd trouble tonight, it will be here. 

    Oh, wait, a strange calm has come over the room. I think it has something to do with Iker Casillas's other half, Sara Carbonaro, arriving. She's a tv presenter in Spain and she has a powerful, almost hypnotic hold, over her male colleagues.  
    Still, she must feel a bit silly being named after a pile of pasta, mushrooms and bacon.
  • 17:16
    In other more relevant news, Italy and Croatia are scoreless after 16 minutes but Balotelli has just belted one at Pletikosa from 20 yards. Great strike but too close to the keeper.
  • 17:24
    FAIreland via Twitter Two decent chances there from Croatia. Game is starting to open up a bit, good quality stuff being played here. #LiveFAI
  • 17:27
    OliverKayTimes via Twitter Gerrard press conf: "With all due respect to Sweden, who are a good team, they're not France. I think we can be a little bit bolder, mor ...
  • 17:28
    Famous last words, there, from the England captain at a press conference
  • 17:29
    carlomalley via Twitter I'm liveblogging from the Gdansk Arena, begorrah, do drop by #COYBIG #euro2012 #Ybig
  • 17:34
    Here's a guy I met on the train, earlier. A gentleman. A sawker coach from the States. He has more big match programmes than most of us.
  • 17:34
  • 17:36
    carlomalley via Twitter RT @FAIreland: Cassano shoots accross the face of goal, should have forced a save out of Pletikosa, right accross the face of goal #LiveFAI
  • 17:37
    The FAI, there. Did you get that. ACROSS THE FACE OF GOAL!!
  • 17:40
    Claudio Marchisio so nearly gave Italy the lead, just then, but Pletikosa, Robbie KEane's former teamma......oh wait, Pirlo has just curled a free past the big Croat.
  • 17:43
    There is a school of thought that that is good news for Ireland. It goes something like this, if Italy beat Croatia, they are on four points. If we assume Croatia lose to Spain, they will be on three and of course, we will have taken a point off Spain, leaving them on five and us on one with a straight shoot out with the Azzurri in Poznan to get through.  
    Got that?
    Me neither.

  • 17:52
    Here's a bizarre stat for you. That Pirlo free-kick was the first direct free scored in the European Championships since Marek Heinze scored for the Czech Rep against Germany in the 2004 Group stages.
  • 18:11
    carlomalley via Twitter RT @Quinner61: Ahead of main event, the press match in Gydnia today was 4-3 thriller! K Kilbane outstanding. Big thanks to Lisa Bergin @ ...
  • 18:12
    What that tweet fails to mention is that Killer was on the losing side, despite his wonderful strike for the third.
  • 18:15
    55 mins: Croatia are enjoying a spell of pressure but the Italians, as is their wont, are enjoying the defending duties. Modric has tried a couple of shots from long range.
  • 18:16
    The Spanish team have arrived at the same stadium. There goes our first chance.
  • 18:16
    Two Italian players on the ground; one should receive an Oscar, the other genuinely needs treatment.
  • 18:19
    However, there is an omen, Pedro Proenca, the referee who took charge of the Champions League final that Trap has been banging on about for four weeks now, is in the middle tonight. Chelsea won that game after scoring with their only corner and being dominated by a Bayern side that had 17.
  • 18:19
    Italy's Thiago Motta is being replaced by Montolivo
  • 18:29
    That man Mandzukic has done it again with a great touch at the back post and neat finish. Game on!
  • 18:30
    A flare on the pitch has forced a stoppage. Just when the Croats were on the attack.
  • 18:35
    FAIreland via Twitter Ireland starting XI: Given, O'Shea, St.Ledger, Dunne, Ward, Duff, Whelan, Andrews, McGeady, Cox and Robbie Keane #COYBIG #Believe #LiveFAI
  • 18:35

    It appears the rumours were right. It's an odd one from the manager, will be interesting to see whether it is he or Keane who drops deep. Presumably that's the plan?

  • 18:36
  • 18:47
    Okay, I'll offer some. This is an odd decision, especially if Cox is playing between the lines.
  • 18:49
    Trap has been touting Keane as the Irish Totti for some time now and has urged him to drop deep before, yet the feeling is he will play as the striker. Cox is not particulalry quick and doesn't particularly cover the ground well. On top of that, this is surely a game in which we needed a physical target man against two centre backs that can get rattled. Walters would have been my choice.
  • 18:52
  • 18:53
  • 18:55
    That result is not a great one for Ireland, by the way. It means, if we get a draw today, we will need to beat Italy and hope Croatia get a result against Spain.
  • 19:09
    This is all predicated on Ireland getting something out of tonight's game. It's a huge ask based on the performance against Croatia and the calibre of the team we're playing tonight.
  • 19:10
    The RTE panel are desperately looking for reasons to be positive. It's flimsy enough.
  • 19:11
    The ol' reasons to be optimistic can be written on the back of a postage stamp.
  • 19:17
    Hope there's plenty of room behind the couch as we're less than half an hour to kick-off
  • 19:21
    finán come on the Green Armay
  • 19:29
    In situ in the Gdansk Arena after a minor accreditation scare. Europe's Final Countdown is playing and the entire crowd, the vast majority of it gree, are 'di-di-di-doing' their heads off.

    Looks like the Spanish fans will be easily outnumbered here this evening. Another stunning show from the Irish travelling contingent adnd there are more to come.
  • 19:30
    Darren 3-1FT OR 5-1
  • 19:31

    But definitely not 4-1?

  • 19:32
    More people running around in shiny costumes. Into a circle for human dominos. The choreagrapher has earned his crust there then.
  • 19:34
    Still raining here in Gdansk. It's been at it all day now, but we are not moving into the territory of a cold night at Stoke yet. It will still suit the Spaniards.
  • 19:37
    It's a nice stadium, this, but it's no Poznan. That said the atmosphere is beginning to pick and the team are on the tunnel. What must be going through West Brom substitute Simon Cox's head now? On the occasion of his 14th cap.
  • 19:39

    Wavesof Come on You Boys in Green rolling around the ground now. Great show of strength.  Here are the teams!

  • 19:42
    Rob Watching this in São Paulo at almost four o'clock with a cold beer in my hand, listening to the Brazilian TV commentators talk about how amazing the Irish support is! Well, it sure is! C'MON LADS, VAMOS!!
  • 19:43
    Spain: Casillas, Arbeloa, Ramos, Pique, Alba, Alonso, Busquets, Silva, Xavi, Iniesta & Torres

  • 19:46
    Ireland kick off and it goes long to Keane but Ramos hoofs clear. They don't like it up  'em
  • 19:46
    Dylan following the game in rural Mexico. Win, lose or draw, I can't stomach the tension.
  • 19:47
    Cox is lying deeper and he's taken down by Busquets. He gets the short free and forces Casillas into a smart save at his near post. Bright start for him.
  • 19:49


  • 19:51

    Its happened again. Iniesta moved the ball to Silva on the edge of the box, Dunne put in a great tackle but then got robbed by Torres and the striker went around Ward and smashed it high into the roof of Given's net.

  • 19:53

    Ireland fight back but to no avail. Silva then forces a straigh forward stop from Given.  Ireland are all at sea here. Xavi finds Arbeloa behind Ward and his header is volleyed wide by Torres.

  • 19:54
    9 min:  Corner Ireland after Andrews' shot is deflected, Dunne gets his head on it but it's well wide
  • 19:54
    FAIreland via Twitter That is the worst start we could have hoped for, same as Croatia, we have conceeded after 3 mins. Torres with the finish. #LiveFAI
  • 19:55
    Keane breaks down the left side and feeds McGeady but the winger runs it out of play.
  • 19:58
    Whelan tries to handpass it away from Silva bu the wee Man City midfielder won it back and found Torres. Timely tackle from Ward in the box
  • 19:59
    Charlie and Arwen Waiting hard to see our daddy in the crowd:)
  • 20:01

    Spain continue to zip it aroung the pitch, Duff gets a challenge in on but Spain go all the way back with the  corner and and Pique holds off two challenges before getting a shot away. Easy for Given.

  • 20:04

    Great tackle by Ward sets up a counter attack from deep but Duff's ball to Keane is too close to Casillas

  • 20:05
    20th minute now. This is about the time St Ledger got the equaliser against Croatia. Doesn'y look like that's gonna happen again.

    Free in Spain. Andrews clipped Iniesta.
  • 20:05

    Xabi Alonso lining it up.

  • 20:06
    Nothing comes of it but a smack in the gob for Torres.
  • 20:09
    Nifty backheel from Silva to Iniest but he's crowded out. Here he comes again and his shot is parried to safety by Given. Ireland are fighting but in the way a punch drunk boxer might before he goes down. St Ledger slides the ball out under pressure.
  • 20:11
    Trap's men are basically kicking for touch at this stage. And when it does get to them there is no keeping it. McGeady almost cost a goal there by lettig the ball beat him and then getting robbed. He's taken a bang on the knee.

    Keane all the way back blocking the short corner. Goes long to Pique, who heads wide.
  • 20:12
    Trapattoni needs a target man on that pitch. That was obvious before and it is painfully obvious now.
  • 20:13
    Even when Ireland do get the ball up the wings, who's going to get their head on it?
  • 20:15
    Almost half an hour gone now, and Xavi finds Arbeloa behind Ward again but he's offside.
  • 20:17
    Ireland hoofing high balls to players no more than five foot nine. Not going to work.

    Tiki Taka nightmare around Ireland's box but Torres fouls as he stretches to receive the ball and shoot.
  • 20:19
    Smashing tackle by Andrews on Silva draws a roar but Ireland go long again and Keane gets beaten in the air again.
  • 20:21

    Pedro Proenca is no lucky omen, then, he just barged Andrews over, put him on his ear and allowed Spain to play on.

    Keane yellow carded on a diminutive Spanish midfielder. Not sure which one, you choose!

  • 20:23
    McGeady nutmegged beautifully by Jordi Alba.He won't like that.
  • 20:24

    Keane drops back rob the ball off Alonso. Huge roar. Ireland try a Spain. Huge groan as they go backwards.

  • 20:26
    Five minutes to go in the first half. Torres could have chipped Given just then but opted to pass and Cox got back to make a great tackle.
  • 20:27

    Whelan penalised for a nothing challenge on Iniesta. Hands down, was just too strong. We don't need decisions like that tonight.

  • 20:28
    Xavi's shot is saved by Given. It has to be said that apart from a couple of routine saves the Ireland keeper has not had to work too hard.
  • 20:30
    He needed a bit of luck there though as Arbeloa's shot cannons off Ward and is turned away by the keepers legs. He then punches the corner and Alonso guides the ball wide on the volley.
  • 20:32
    Whelan yellow carded for a cynical trip on SIlva, he seems to be having a go at Keane, who was jst put through, sort of, by Cox, but his shot was blocked.  Thre

    Last action of the half is Iniesta's shot from 20 yards getting tipped over by Given.
  • 20:41
    1-0 Spain at the break, then. As one colleague put it, it's a 1-0 thrashing. Ireland's pass success rate in that half was 61 per cent.
  • 20:42
    They have run 5.46km on average. No surprise that the five midfielders have covered the most ground chasing little red blurs all over the pitch.
  • 20:46
    Spain back out on the pitch, now here come Ireland. Walters is coming on for Cox.

    Cox actually played pretty well but he was in a no-win situation.
  • 20:49

    That was Torres's first competitive goal for Spain in a year and nine months. We're a great confidence builder.

  • 20:50
    Andrews and Whelan are robbed by Torres and Given has to save from Arbeloa.

  • 20:51
    Well that's that. Silva with a second and even the Irish fans have gone quiet.
  • 20:52
    js Irish basic skill level is utterly shocking.....unbelievable Jeff
  • 20:53
    Iniesta's shot was punched by Given, straight to Silva who turns, Ward, St Ledger AND Dunne inside out and rolls it past Given. Poor from Shay again. Should have caught the initial shot and if not, should have punched it anywhere but Silva
  • 20:55

    Alonso carded for a foul on Walters.

  • 20:57
    brooder This is the worst Irish team ever seen..............why??????????????..........
  • 20:58
    An amazing save from Given keeps it at 2-0.

    Bear in mind they are playing against the best Spanish side ever.
  • 21:00
    Walters wins a header and knocks it down to Keane. Eureka, it works! 

    Dodged a bullet there. Torres offside.
  • 21:01
    That save from Given was from a Xavi shot from 12 yards. Full stretch to tip it away.
  • 21:02
    Rob I'm with Brooder, I have NEVER seen a worse Irish team, it's embarrassing. All heart, absolutely no skill. Coming up against one of the best teams in the world doesn't help, but still...are we the worst of Euro 2012 or what? Sad...
  • 21:05

    Busquets shoots just wide of Given's post.  Ireland launch a free into the Spanish box but Walters concedes a free for nothing much frankly and Keane takes a bang on the shin as Alonso tries to block his shot.

  • 21:07
    64th minute and Andrews over elaborates in the box after McGeady sends him into space. A low cross, rather than the cut back to McGeady, might have sufficed.
  • 21:09
    Former Liverpool hearthrob Xabi Alonso is replaced by Javi Martinez.

    Spain may have dropped theor guard a bit though because Ireland have broken in space at times. Corner is whistled as a foul though. Proenca just blowing his whistle for the craic now, I genuinely think he is guessing. And it's mostly going against Ireland
  • 21:13
    Another for Torres

    71 minutes
    Ireland robbed in midfield and ball is poked through to Torres who slots it past Given
  • 21:15
    It's a tough watch this. Ireland are just praying for the whistle at the moment. The goods news is that Torres won't get his hat-trick because he's being replaced by Cesc Fabregas.

    Wait .... is that good news?
  • 21:15
    Guest Oh God just remembered they still have to play Italy
  • 21:17
    Yes, an Italy side that is looking quite good.

    Chance for Keane as he breaks down the left channel and shoots, Casillas gets down well and it rebounds to safety.

  • 21:17
    Martinez booked for a challenge on Whelan.
  • 21:18
    What's this? James McClean on for Duff?

    Well, there's no pressure now, at least. Massive reception from Ireland fans. Spaniards, look confused. Que?
  • 21:21

    Paul Green is on for Glenn Whelan now. Exciting isn't it?

  • 21:25

    That's that answered. It wasn't good news to see Cesc. He's just left Green sprawling and buried one across Given and in off the far post.

  • 21:28

    A text from a friend informs me we are to have a late substitution with the whole team coming off and Katie Taylor coming on. That'll learn 'em!

  • 21:28
    Goods news!  Only three minutes left.
  • 21:31
    The Fields is being sung aloud as this one plays out. It's a been a horrible, horrible evening.
  • 21:32
    Oh, there's three minutes additional time
  • 21:36
    Kris I'm writing from Poland and I'm really impressed by your fans. 4-0, 2 minutes to go and the stadium sounds with "The Fields of Atherny". the attitude is great !! I hope all other counbtries will learn from it.
  • 21:36
    Every Cloud.....

  • 21:36
    That's it, it ended at four. Two for Torres, one for Cesc and one for Silva. Depressing.
  • 22:17
    G Yeah were good losers alrihht
  • 22:18
    G Roll on Italy.!!!
  • 22:18
    Thomas You might have been slaughtered ón the picchú
  • 22:18
    Kris It's official -your team will soon return home. I live in Poznan- the city will not be as cheerful as it is now with the Green Army around. Sad.
  • 22:18
    Guest you have great, fighting team and fantastic fans! keep your head up! greetings from Poland, Justyna
  • 22:18
    Sylvester - Poland Your fans are amazing!!!! In my opinion - the best fans in Europe now!!! Poznan is yours.
  • 22:19
    Im from Poland Ohhh, I was hoping that Ireland win this game. Polish commentators on the TV says that Irleand fans were absolutely brilliant. About the Ireland team: "they play to the end, never give up, fantastic". I wish to be on the stadium today. Cheers, Marius
  • 22:19
    Guest I'm from Gdańsk, Poland and I regret I was watching this match on TV. Irish fans are simply amazing, it was stunning to hear them singing at the end of the match, while Ireland was losing 4-0.
  • 22:19
    Javi Very fair players and absolutely great supporters despite losing 4 nil. Que viva España!