Republic of Ireland fans would have been bitterly disappointed not to qualify for Euro 2012. They tried so many times in recent years and in the last World Cup they really deserved to go though if wasn't for France and Thierry Henry. This time they had a dream of qualifying draw but the home defeat against Russia put them under pressure throughout the campaign. Ireland however fought hard to finish second and this was a real achievement. They draw 0-0 in Moscow last September and managed to get ahead of a good team like Armenia. The one aspect you can bet Giovanni Trapattoni will get absolutely right is the defence: this was the main strength for Ireland and although they may be short of brilliance at times, their style needs to be respected.
Giovanni Trapattoni's career will continue long beyond Euro 2012. He has recently signed a new contract which will take him to the end of the qualifying campaign for the 2014 World Cup. This is a man who has had plenty of success on his career but he just wants more. Trap doesn't want a lucrative pension, he wants to be involved in the game. He has won 20 major honours, including Serie A seven times but didn't do very well in major tournament: at the 2002 World Cup with Italy he only got to the round of 16 and failed to get out of the Group Stage at Euro 2004.
The star of the team is Robbie Keane: he has scored seven times in the qualifications and has always been the charismatic player in the team. He has performed much better in a green jersey than at club level where he can get swallowed up by bigger stars. He come to the Euro on the back of 53 international goals and I would be very surprised if he will not add to that in Poland and Ukraine.
In the football betting market Republic of Ireland are the outsiders to qualify from Group C at the price of 5.6. Even if in this group they will face Spain and Italy this still looks a gigantic price. There is a real chance they will just fall short but it has been proven in the past that work ethics and tactical nous can take you long ways in an European Championship.. They recently met Italy and Croatia and were able to get decent results so I think that this group is much more open than bookmakers thinks.
It is probably too much to back them to win the group at 20.0, but I feel that the price to qualify is far too big also considering that Spain have injury problems and that Italy are not the team they used to be and their preparation has also been disrupted by the match-fixing scandal. Croatia are at the same level of Ireland so if Trapattoni's men will be able to win against them than they have a fantastic chance of making history in this tournament.
Article Source: Marco_MN_Narardi