The team of Gary Breens that we've always dreamed of is now a reality

As part of SPAR's campaign, we have put together a team completely made up of Gary Breen

BY Newstalk 15:15 Friday 27 May 2016, 15:15 27 May 2016

Image: ©INPHO/Lorraine O'Sullivan

The popular refrain from the terraces called for a team composed entirely of Gary Breens, from between the sticks as the number one ‘keeper, to the big man up top who can find the finish to give Ireland the win.

Perhaps it started in jest, but we've decided to break the team down, position by position, to prove that a team of Breens would be a match for anyone on their day.


He once handled the ball accidentally in a 2-1 win for Sunderland over Crystal Palace. Accidental? Nah! He was just showing off his goalkeeping prowess. No penalty given in any case.

Right Back

If you have a cultured left foot, there's no point lacing up your boots because Breen will mark you out of the game.

Centre Back

A natural as the man to marshal a back-four. It helps that this is actually Gary's official position and he admired Milan legend Franco Baresi.

Centre Back

Close your eyes and you can see Gary striding out of his defence like a modern day Franz Beckenbauer, starting attacks from the heart of the back-four.

Left Back

To this day, Brazil legend Roberto Carlos insists that Breen was his inspiration.

Holding Midfielder

If Breen is given a run-out in front of the defence, it will go from being called the Claude Makelele role to the Gary Breen role.

One of the Gary Breens in 2003 ©INPHO/Patrick Bolger


Who says an attacking midfielder has to be of Maradona's stature? With his height, Breen can see over the opposition defence, giving the vision to lob in pinpoint through balls.

Right Wing

On June 19th in a random long-forgotten Premier League game, West Brom's Darren Moore handled a cross from the boot of Breen on the right wing. No penalty was given but had that cross gone in to the box, rest assured that one of his team-mates would have scored.

Left Wing

Centre-back Steve Staunton's left foot delivered the assist for his 2002 goal, but the shoe could so easily have been on the other foot down that flank, with David Beckham-esque precision.

Target man

He witnessed Niall Quinn's flick-on ability first-hand in Ireland training and matches, so rest assured the master taught the apprentice how to be the perfect aerial foil up front.


If his World Cup goal against Saudi Arabia is anything to go by, he has the deft touch and killer instinct to lead the line with ease.

Here is what the final lineup would look like:


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