Euro 2012 diary
McGeady offers his spy services
Aiden McGeady has travelled further than any Irish player to be here this week, with the Spartak Moscow star adjusting well to his new surroundings in Russia.
Indeed, the 24-year-old is likely to be a huge focus of attention as this qualifying group reaches a climax, given his new-found knowledge about the top seeds and favourites.
Russia are in Armenia this Saturday, and McGeady is hoping they will drop points.
Still, he doesn't envisage that Giovanni Trapattoni shall be paying too much heed to his advice ahead of the Moscow trip in September.
"He's a very experienced coach so I'm not 100pc sure he'll take my opinions into consideration, but if he wants to know things of course I'll tell him," said McGeady.
"But he's the type of coach that'll probably know more than me.
"They (Russia) probably have the strongest squad out of everyone but it's down to us and the other teams to make sure that, regardless of whether they go through or not, it's ourselves going through."
In other words, the dreaded play-off is a very likely scenario.
'bang' scare for hurt St Ledger
WITH Trapattoni urging his players to take it easy in training this week, the last thing he needed yesterday was Sean St Ledger going down injured in the match at the end of their session in Malahide, particularly with his regular centre-half partner Richard Dunne such a doubt.
St Ledger went down in agony and was surrounded by anxious-looking medical staff for a couple of nervous minutes.
However, while the photographers snapped away, he was soon back on his feet and walked to the bus untroubled.
"It was only a bang," said Trapattoni.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
"You have to trust the players. You cannot go to bed together."
Giovanni Trapattoni explains that he will not take things to the extreme in order to monitor his players' social behaviour on international duty -- much to said players' relief, presumably.
NUMBER OF THE DAY
3 The amount of caps won by Kevin Foley during his five years in the Irish senior squad. The Wolves man is in line for his first competitive action against Macedonia on Saturday.