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Player Ratings : Slovakia v Ireland

13 October 2010 3,242 views No Comment Written by Michael

Two points lost, or one point gained? That question can probably only be answered at the end of this campaign. For the first 30 minutes Ireland played some terrific football and were completely dominating proceedings. The second half performance was a different story however, with many of the flaws from the first half of the Russia game reappearing. The goal from Slovakia was a sucker punch, as Slovakia up to that stage had created nothing of note. On top of this, the penalty miss could not have come at a worse time. The double header against Macedonia now become essential 6 pointers (particularly with Slovakia having a double header with Andorra at the same time). Judging from FYR Macedonia’s display against Russia last night, getting the 6 points will be anything but an easy feat.

Shay Given  – 6.5

Centimetres away from keeping out the Slovak’s goal. Precious little else to do in the game, even in the second half when Slovakia got more of a foot hold on proceedings. Needs a move in January to a club where his abilities will be appreciated. Does not look as comfortable as he once did, thanks no doubt to his club situation.

John O’Shea6

Looked very calm and confident throughout the game. His experience was needed when Slovakia were pushing forward in the second half, and he certainly did not let anyone down. With Fahey having a tendency to tuck in, O’Shea was left exposed at times, but it never became as issue.

Richard Dunne – 7

Another towering display from the Irish leader on the pitch. Solid, assured and good in the air, Dunne held the back 4 together excellently. One blot on his copy book was his poor back pass to Given in the second half. Great ball to McGeady to secure the penalty.

Sean St Ledger – 7

Took his goal with the finesse of a top level striker. Strong in the air and worked very well with Dunne in the heart of defence. Dealt well with everything that came his way and can be rightly happy with one of his better performances in the green shirt.

Kevin Kilbane – 6.5

One of his better games, and came at the right time as many Irish fans have begun questioning Kilbane’s presence in the starting 11.  Assured in defence, never caught out for pace and good positioning throughout.

Keith Fahey – 7

Took his opportunity very well in the team. Fantastic free kick for St ledgers goal, and generally good set pieces all night. Great first touch and always looking for a good pass rather than the more obvious pass. Faded in the second half before being taken off with an injury. Will be hoping for more first team football over the coming months for his club.

Glenn Whelan – 5.5

He knows himself just how poor he was against the Russians. Unfortunately, last nights performance was only a small improvement. Very poor for the Slovak goal, where he inexplicably lost his man Jan Durica from a corner. Passing-wise he adds very little to this Irish team.

Paul Green – 5

Did well breaking up the Slovakian attacks, and settled well into the game after a sloppy opening 10 minutes. Offers nothing on the ball however and was guilty of giving it away all too easy on a couple of occasions. Night ended early after an injury.

Aidan McGeady – 7.5

Another impressive night for McGeady, who is fast becoming a very important player for Ireland. However every team is realising his danger and he was tightly marked throughout the game. Worried the Slovaks all night with his pace and trickery.  Great work to nip in and get a touch before the keeper to win the penalty. Although a very good night, his crosses were still frustrating.

Shane Long – 8

Excellent performance, particularly in the first half. Brilliant in the air for such a small player. Won the free kick for St ledgers goal and caused problems with his pace throughout. Came back to help out the midfield when needed also.Staked his claim well for more international football in the future.

Robbie Keane – 5

In urgent need of a move from Spurs. Looked rusty and sluggish throughout and seems to have lost the sharpness that he once oozed. Did not produce when we really needed him too. Poor penalty, which he telegraphed the whole way, and two poor misses typified Keane’s night. Very poor.

Darron Gibson - 5.5

Big opportunity for the Derry midfielder when he came on after 41 minutes. However he did not take his chance well. Did his defensive duties admirably but offered little otherwise and did not get is foot on the ball and slow up play as was hoped. Set pieces could have been better.

Andy Keogh – 5.5

Difficult for him to get a good rating as he was only on the pitch for 20 minutes. Ireland were defending consistently when he came on so saw little of the ball.

Giovanni Trapattoni – 6.5

Changed nothing about the system from the Russia game, but there was a big improvement in performance in the first half. Fahey and Long certainly did not let him down. Lack of options on the bench was very worrying, with no out and out striker there. Seemed to accept the one point in the second half when we could have easily pushed on in search of three. Trying to bring on Kevin Foley with 20 seconds remaining was quite puzzling.

Related posts:

  1. Player Ratings: Ireland v Russia
  2. Shane Long eager to start against Slovakia
  3. Live Commentary: Ireland v Slovakia
  4. Ireland Squad Analysis: Russia & Slovakia
  5. Kevin Doyle withdraws from squad ahead of Slovakia match

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