Friday 30 September 2016

'I thought I would cause them problems' - Shane Long reacts to his greatest ever goal

Tom Rooney

Published 08/10/2015 | 22:23

Match-winner Shane Long has described the feeling of netting the Republic of Ireland’s only goal against Germany at Aviva Stadium as 'phenomenal'.

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The Southampton striker was only on the pitch five minutes when he latched onto fellow substitute Darren Randolph’s huge clearance before blasting a fine effort past Manuel Neur.

Many an eyebrow was raised when Martin O’Neill’s team sheet showed that Ipswich’s Daryl Murphy had been selected to start ahead of Long, but the Tipperary native said he was more than ready when the manager called his name.

Speaking to RTÉ immediately after a heart-stopping 94 minutes, the elated Long could barely catch his breath, though was quick to thank Randolph for his assist.

“The gaffer sent me on, as you can see it was a big effort and we tried to frustrate them. I think when I came on there was some tired legs, and the gaffer said to me to test them in behind and put them under pressure," he said

“Thankfully when the ball came through to me, I finished it off. Darren did really well when he came in for Shay, and we were always confident when he would kick it long, and I thought myself and Johnny Walters would cause them problems when it came in and we did.

“It’s been amazing; to beat the world champions and go Poland with everything to play for, it’s nice to have it back in our own hands. To see the atmosphere here, it’s been amazing, but to get the winning goal is phenomenal,” he said.

Meanwhile, man of the match Wes Hoolahan lauded Ireland’s tireless defensive effort and, of course, Long’s composure for sealing the tie in the 70th minute.

The Norwich playmaker also looked forward to Sunday’s clash with Poland in Warsaw, particularly with the knowledge that Ireland have secured a playoff place regardless of the outcome.

“We knew it was going to be difficult today and we defended straight from the off, but we knew we’d get chances on the break. We were lucky enough that we did and Shane took it, and what a goal it was.

8 October 2015; Shane Long, Republic of Ireland, celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Germany. Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE
8 October 2015; Shane Long, Republic of Ireland, celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Germany. Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE
Shane Long, Republic of Ireland, celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Germany. Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE
Shane Long, Republic of Ireland, shoots past Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer to score his side's first goal despite the attempts of J?r?me Boateng. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Germany. Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE
Shane Long, Republic of Ireland, shoots to score his side's first goal despite the attempts of J?r?me Boateng, Germany. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Germany. Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Matt Browne / SPORTSFILE
Germany's Jerome Boateng and Republic of Ireland's Jonathan Walters (right) battle for the ball during the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin.
Germany's Jerome Boateng and Republic of Ireland's Jeff Hendrick (right) battle for the ball during the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Republic of Ireland's Wes Hoolahan during the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Germany's Jonas Hector and Republic of Ireland's James McCarthy (right) battle for the ball during the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Germany's Mario Gotze before going off injured Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Germany's Mario Gotze before going off injured Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Germany's Bastian Schweinsteiger (centre) before the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland's Shay Given is stretchered off for Darren Randolph after sustaining an injury as manager Martin O'Neill looks on Reuters / Phil Noble Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Republic of Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane (left) and manager Martin O'Neill before the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Republic of Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane during the warm-up before the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland's Shay Given is stretchered off after sustaining an injury as manager Martin O'Neill looks on Reuters / Phil Noble Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Republic of Ireland's Wes Hoolahan and Germany's Jerome Boateng (left) battle for the ball during the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Germany manager Joachim Low on the touchline during the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland's Jonathan Walters in action with Germany's Matthias Ginter Reuters / Phil Noble Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Republic of Ireland's Daryl Murphy and Germany's Jerome Boateng (right) battle for the ball during the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland's James McCarthy Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Germany's Ilkay Gundogan Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland's Jonathan Walters in action with Germany's Matthias Ginter Reuters / Phil Noble Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Germany's Ilkay Gundogan Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland's James McCarthy Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland's Shay Given is stretchered off after sustaining an injury Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland's Shay Given is stretchered off after sustaining an injury Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland's Shay Given is stretchered off after sustaining an injury Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Germany's Jerome Boateng in action with Republic of Ireland's Jonathan Walters Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Germany's Mario Gotze in action with Republic of Ireland's James McCarthy Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Republic of Ireland's Stephen Ward Reuters / Phil Noble Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Germany's Manuel Neuer Reuters / Phil Noble Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Republic of Ireland's Jonathan Walters (left) goes down under a challenge from Germany's Mats Hummels during the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Republic of Ireland's Wes Hoolahan (right) in action with Germany's Mesut Ozil and Ilkay Gundogan (left) during the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Republic of Ireland's Robert Brady and Germany's Jerome Boateng (left) battle for the ball during the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Republic of Ireland's Robert Brady in action during the UEFA European Championship Qualifying match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 8, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.
Football - Republic of Ireland v Germany - UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifying Group D - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - 8/10/15 Germany's Thomas Muller in action with Republic of Ireland's Stephen Ward Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.

“At least we have a playoff; we’ll be resting up tonight for going there on Saturday to hopefully get the win and second place,” he said

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