Ireland defender Cyrus Christie says that Martin O’Neill’s squad are happy to answer back at critics who doubt the team’s ability to deliver.
“I think for some reason there is a negativity surrounding us and people don’t seem to think that we’re capable of achieving stuff but we keep proving people wrong,” says the defender, who won his 15th senior cap in Cardiff on Monday.
“The team spirit is phenomenal, the fans back us all the way. We keep grinding and going to the end, proving people wrong, we’re getting our rewards.
“Look back to the Georgia (away) game and that was probably a crucial point in the end. We probably should have won, and maybe that would have us in a better position but we can’t look back at that now, we have to look forward to the play-offs.
“We’ll need to build on this performance and we’ll be full of confidence. We’ve got momentum now, we had a bit of a sticky patch when we weren’t picking up those wins, then losing to Serbia, but we bounced back and have shown heart and determination. We showed a lot of passion. People respect us for that and we’re a tough team to beat,” he added.