John Giles' verdict on a "straggly" Republic of Ireland performance

Leeds and Ireland legend discusses Thursday night's friendly

BY Raf Diallo 22:11 Thursday 15 November 2018, 22:11 15 Nov 2018

It wasn't a performance to draw much inspiration from but in the end Republic of Ireland avoided defeat against Northern Ireland - a sentence which probably sums up the predicament.

The match which also featured a send-off for Ireland midfield stalwart Glenn Whelan but in terms of positives saw Darren Randolph earn the Man of the Match award which says it all really.

Ireland and Leeds legend John Giles spent the evening alongside us and had his say on the performance from Martin O'Neill's side.

"I wouldn't have taken an awful lot of positives from that game. I think Northern Ireland and Michael O'Neill had a lot more to take from the game. They played like a team," he said of a showing he saw as "straggly".

 John also shared his reaction to the match programme cover which featured him:

As he pointed out, Northern Ireland do not have any stars but "as a unit, they were better". 

"There's no doubt that the way they have played, Northern Ireland, in recent times with similar resources, if not fewer resources, they have played as a team better than we have done," John added.

John also felt Northern Ireland were more organised around the basics like set pieces which helped them set a tempo better than Martin O'Neill's side.

"There's no doubt that Northern Ireland are better at that than us and that's nothing to do with the players' ability," he said. 

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