Republic of Ireland 0-0 Wales: lackluster Nations League game ends scoreless


Wales’ record of 100% wins in the 2020/21 Nations League has come to an end as they were held to a goalless draw in a lackluster encounter with Republic of Ireland at Aviva Stadium. Ryan Giggs ‘side have struggled desperately to create clear openings in Dublin, with Harry Wilson and David Brooks recording the visitors’ only efforts on target.

In truth, the hosts bore the greatest threat, with Daryl Horgan and Shane Long both having the opportunity to fill the net.

Wales lobbied for a winner late after James McClean’s expulsion.

But they haven’t been able to secure three out of three wins in the competition, although the stalemate has meant they are yet to concede a goal in the last edition of the Nations League.

Ahead of the game, it was confirmed that the Republic of Ireland would be without Adam Idah and Aaron Connolly after coming into close contact with a staff member who tested positive for coronavirus ahead of their loss in the play-offs semifinals of the League of Nations against Slovakia.

And the hosts’ preparation for the match was thrown into chaos hours before kick-off, as it emerged five men were due to be sent off after an unnamed player tested positive for Covid-19.

John Egan, Alan Browne, Callum O’Dowda, Callum Robinson and James McCarthy were all left out of the Republic of Ireland’s 23-man squad, and that meant Stephen Kenny only had seven substitutes on the bench, Wales having the total quota of 12. substitutes.

Giggs had his own issues, with Gareth Bale and Joe Allen both unavailable, while Chris Mepham was sent off after suffering a knee injury in the 3-0 loss to England.

However, they received a significant boost when striker Kieffer Moore – who entered the game after scoring in three of his four away games for Wales – was declared fit to play after s ‘recovering from the toe problem he suffered at Wembley.

Ethan Ampadu signed up alongside Joe Rodon in Mepham’s absence to complete the center-back duo ahead of Wayne Hennessey, who edged Neville Southall to become Wales’ second most capped male player.

And in an added boost, Aaron Ramsey started for the visitors, with the Juventus ace taking the captain’s armband in Dublin.

Wales came into the game after winning each of their last four competitive matches without conceding a goal.

As for the Irish, they were set off in search of their first triumph since Kenny took over as boss earlier this year and entered the game without a win in their previous seven competitive outings.

Kieffer Moore and Aaron Ramsey of Wales walk away from Jayson Molumby of the Republic of Ireland.

There was nothing for both sides to shout from the start, as blows were traded in what was a low-key encounter.

Robbie Brady couldn’t test Hennessey with what was the game’s first shot at 17 minutes.

And both sides were dealt a blow soon after, as Kevin Long had to be replaced after sustaining an eye injury following a collision with Moore, a challenge that earned the forward a card. yellow, which means he is suspended for the clash with Bulgaria on Wednesday evening.

Giggs’ men slowly started to find their rhythm and saw Wilson pull a curling shot on goal just outside the box before the half hour mark, although Darren Randolph was up to the effort.

Rodon started from a corner soon after, and the visitors were left furious in the 32nd minute as Ampadu fell into the box to a challenge from Randolph after the Republic of Ireland keeper slipped the ball, but referee Tasos Sidiropoulos awarded the hosts a free kick rather than pointing to the penalty spot.

Brady was then unable to rub salt into the wounds after shooting wide after jumping on Wilson’s loose pass.

And Cyrus Christie made an effort just over the crossbar to end what was an uninspiring first half at Aviva Stadium.

Shane Long – on what was his first start for his country in two years – had the game’s best opener 10 minutes after the restart, although he was not able to lead Enda Stevens’ center at- beyond Hennessey.

Dylan Levitt and Neco Williams replaced Matt Smith and Wilson midway through the second half as both sides continued to look rough on the commercial side of the pitch.

Republic of Ireland replacement Daryl Horgan soared not long after Brooks replaced Daniel James.

But the home side were reduced to 10 men with seven minutes left on the clock as McClean received a red card for a cynical foul on Ampadu, Joe Morrell now unavailable to face Bulgaria after winning his second booking of the campaign .

But Giggs’ troops were unable to find a late winner, as they did against Finland and Bulgaria in the most recent international camp, meaning the loot was shared in Dublin.

Wales will play their third and final match in the current international break against Bulgaria on Wednesday evening.

Harry Wilson of Wales

Republic of Ireland: Randolph; Doherty, K Long (Christie 25), Duffy (C), Stevens; Molumby (Cullen 90), Hourihane, Hendrick; Brady (Horgan 74), S Long (Maguire 74), McClean.

Unused Submarines: Travers, Kelleher, J Byrne.

Cartons jaunes: Christie 30, McClean 79

Carton rouge: McClean 83

Wales: Hennessey; C Roberts, Ampadu, Rodon, B Davies; Smith (Levitt 67), Morrell; Wilson (N Williams 67), Ramsey (C), James (Brooks 77); Moore.

Unused Submarines: Ward, A Davies, Gunter, Cabango, J Williams, T Roberts, Matondo, Norrington-Davies, Vaulks.

Cartons jaunes: Moore 21, Morrell 83

Referee: Tasos Sidiropoulos

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