Friday 28 April 2017

Republic of Ireland player ratings: Jon Walters shines brightest again

Jon Walters, Republic of Ireland, celebrates with team-mate James McCarthy after scoring his side's winning goal. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
Jon Walters, Republic of Ireland, celebrates with team-mate James McCarthy after scoring his side's winning goal. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill celebrates on the final whistle. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; Referee Ovidiu Hategan. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Piaras ? M?dheach / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; John O'Shea, Republic of Ireland, in action against Valeri Kazaishvili, Georgia. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Piaras ? M?dheach / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; Georgia manager Kakhaber Tskhadadze. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Seb Daly / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; Jon Walters, Republic of Ireland, turns to celebrate after scoring his side's first goal. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; Republic of Ireland players celebrate their side's first goal, scored by Jon Walters. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Piaras ? M?dheach / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill reacts after his team missed a goal opportunity. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Seb Daly / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; Jon Walters, Republic of Ireland, is congratulated by team-mate Wes Hoolihan, left, after scoring his side's first goal. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; Jon Walters, Republic of Ireland, celebrates after scoring his side's first goal. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; James McCarthy, Republic of Ireland, celebrates after team mate Jon Walters scores his side's first goal. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Seb Daly / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; Jon Walters, hidden, Republic of Ireland, is congratulated by team-mates after scoring his side's first goal. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; Jon Walters, Republic of Ireland, turns to celebrate after scoring his side's first goal. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
7 September 2015; A Republic of Ireland supporter celebrates a goal by Jon Walters. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Piaras ? M?dheach / SPORTSFILE
Ireland's Jon Walters scores the first goal of the game
Robbie Keane is at full stretch as he fires an effort on the Georgia goal a during last night’s Euro 2016 qualifier
Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill
Needs caption
Jon Walters, centre, Republic of Ireland, scores his side's first goal of the game. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Group D, Republic of Ireland v Georgia, Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Ramsey Cardy / SPORTSFILE
FIreland's Jonathan Walters in action with Georgia's Solomon Kverkvelia Action Images via Reuters / Paul Childs
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

The Republic of Ireland got the 1-0 win they needed in their vital Group D qualifier against Georgia at the Aviva Stadium and here is how we rated Martin O'Neill's side.

SHAY GIVEN - A quiet night for the veteran Ireland keeper, he looked secure in the moderate amount of work he was asked to do. Given's experience will be vital in the final two Group D qualifiers. 6

SEAMUS COLEMAN - The Everton man was a threat breaking forward and he was a potent attacking outlet down the flank. Ireland need to find a way to use his pace on the wing with a little more efficiency. 7

JOHN O'SHEA - The lack of action that may come O'Shea's way at Sunderland this season is a concern, but O'Neill will want one of his most experienced performers to lead his defence. 6

CIARAN CLARK - He didn't always look secure when the Georgians offered their rare forward bursts, but he is the best bet to partner O'Shea at the heart of his backline. 6

ROBBIE BRADY - The established left back in this Ireland side, Brady needs to improve his set-piece delivery if he is to be at his most effective for O'Neill. 6

JEFF HENDRICK - The game needed a moment of magic to crack it open and the Derby man provided it with his burst for Walters goal. For that reason alone, he deserves a lofty billing. 7

GLENN WHELAN - Much-maligned he may be, but the Stoke midfielder does a job for Ireland as the anchor at the base of the midfield. A yellow card means he will miss the next game against Germany. 7

JAMES McCARTHY - The Everton midfielder did his best to influence the game, but he came up short on the international stage once again. We have to hope he shakes off his uncertainty in the final two Group D games against Germany and Poland. 6

WES HOOLAHAN - The clamour to get this Norwich midfielder into the Ireland side has not been followed by match winning displays. He struggled to make his mark in the first half, but improved after the break. 6

JONATHAN WALTERS - Every team needs a player like this. He gives his all, rarely lets his performance level drop and pops up with crucial goals. An unsung hero for Ireland, he was man of the match on a night when he bullied the Georgian defence. 8

ROBBIE KEANE - It seemed a little harsh to haul Keane off at half-time as he was not given any kind of service from a lacklustre side before the break. Removing this goal scoring great sent a message to the rest of the Ireland player to raise their level. 6

SUBSTUTUTES

SHANE LONG (for Keane 45 mins) - Handed his chance at half-time and he showed energy and enthusiasm leading the line. He could have made it 2-0 to Ireland, but fluffed his lines with a great chance in front of goal. 6

JAMES McCLEAN (for Hoolahan 75 mins) - Booked seconds after he arrived on the pitch, you can never fault McClean for his passion and effort. 6

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