Ireland earn draw in Poland

Martin O'Neill remains unbeaten as Republic of Ireland manager after seeing his side battle to a goalless draw with Poland in Poznan.

Last Updated: 19/11/13 at 23:12 Post Comment

Jakub Blaszczykowski gets the better of Paul Green

Jakub Blaszczykowski gets the better of Paul Green

More of the games that matter

2 years free Sky Broadband Unlimited for Sky Sports customers

Stephen Kelly went close for the Republic with a first-half header for the visitors, but substitute Lukasz Teodorczyk almost won it for the hosts in spectacular style with a long-range second-half strike.

But the Republic held on for a draw to go with their 3-0 victory over Latvia to leave O'Neill and assistant Roy Keane smiling at the end of their team's first get-together.

O'Neill revealed after Friday evening's game that he would use the trip to Poland to assess the depth of his squad, and he was as good as his word as he retained only four of the men who started at the Aviva Stadium.

One of them, Aiden McGeady, picked up where he had left off, running at the Polish defence in the early stages to pin the home side back.

The Spartak Moscow winger forced Piotr Celeban into an eighth-minute block which left the defender winded, and as front two Shane Long and Anthony Stokes made their presence felt, Ireland had marginally the better of the early stages.

They might have gone ahead with 21 minutes gone when, not for the first time, a set-piece almost paid dividends.

Jon Walters, wearing the captain's armband in the absence of the rested Robbie Keane, flicked on McGeady's corner and found Kelly unmarked in front of goal.

However, the full-back was unable to react quickly enough and although he managed to head the ball down, it reared up off the turf and looped over keeper Wojciech Szczesny's crossbar.

Poland had caused few problems for the visitors up to that point, but they stepped up a gear as the half progresses with star men Lewandowski and Jakub Blaszczykowski starting to make an impact.

Keeper David Forde needed two attempts to claim Blaszczykowski's 25th-minute shot as it skidded across the uneven surface, and defender Adam Marciniak lifted a header harmlessly over 11 minutes later.

However, Ireland largely managed to contain the tricky Lewandowski, although substitute John O'Shea - he had replaced the injured Sean St Ledger after just 31 minutes - was booked for deliberate handball after being caught out by the striker.

Blaszczykowski very nearly got the second half off to the perfect start for the Poles when he carved his way between Kelly and midfielder James McCarthy and into the penalty area, and he might have gone all the way had O'Shea not intervened at the decisive moment.

An off-balance Long skied a 51st-minute left-foot effort high over at the other end and Walters saw an ambitious attempt blocked by Marciniak two minutes later as Ireland responded.

Szczesny had to make a smart save on the hour to keep out Stokes' well-struck effort after he had been picked out by McGeady, who departed soon afterwards along with McCarthy as defender Alex Pearce and James McClean joined the fray.

The Wigan winger needed just six minutes to make an impression with a teasing cross to which neither Long nor Stokes could get a touch in front of goal.

But fellow substitute Teodorczyk whistled a speculative effort over Forde's bar seconds later with the game starting to open up.

Poland piled on the pressure as time ran down, but Forde had few saves of note to make with the men in front of him battling admirably to secure a shut-out.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

More Match Results

Wednesday, 10 September 2014
03:00
Mexico 1-0 Bolivia  
02:00
Brazil 1-0 Ecuador  
01:00
Chile 1-0 Haiti  
00:30
Canada 3-1 Jamaica  
Tuesday, 09 September 2014
17:00
Kuwait 0-1 Bahrain  
13:00
Qatar 0-2 Peru  
12:35
China 1-1 Jordan  
11:20
Japan 2-2 Venezuela  
Monday, 08 September 2014
20:00
Saudi Arabia 2-3 Australia  
15:00
Uzbekistan 3-1 New Zealand  

Footer 365

Europa League: Opening games see Inter Milan and PSV win

Inter Milan, PSV, and Dinamo Moscow and Dinamo Zagreb were amongst the winners in the Europa League group stage.

Europa League: Spurs held to goalless stalemate against Partizan Belgrade

Spurs were held to a goalless stalemate in their Europa League Group C opener against Partizan Belgrade.

Felix Magath departs Fulham with Kit Symons taking charge on temporary basis

Felix Magath has left his role as Fulham manager after the Championship club's dismal start to the season.

Mail Box

Why Doesn't Rodgers Play Borini?

One Liverpool supporter thinks this could be Fabio Borini's year, whilst we also have thoughts on the Red Bulls, Welbeck vs Gervinho and Paul Lambert's new deal...

Could Arsenal Benefit From Top Four Exit?

That's one idea in the morning mailbox as the Arsene Wenger debate rumbles on. Plus, comparing Welbeck to Gervinho and some advice for Greg Dyke and the FA...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property