Manager – Giovanni Trapattoni
Squad – Goalkeepers: Shay Given (Aston Villa), Keiren Westwood (Sunderland), David Forde (Millwall).
Defenders: John O’Shea (Sunderland), Stephen Kelly (Fulham), Stephen Ward (Wolves), Richard Dunne (Aston Villa), Sean St Ledger (Leicester), Darren O’Dea (Leeds United), Kevin Foley (Wolves).
Midfielders: Glenn Whelan (Stoke), Keith Andrews (West Brom), Keith Fahey (Birmingham), Darron Gibson (Everton), Damien Duff (Fulham), Aiden McGeady (Spartak Moscow), Stephen Hunt (Wolves), James McClean (Sunderland). Forwards: Robbie Keane (LA Galaxy), Kevin Doyle (Wolves), Shane Long, Simon Cox (both West Brom), Jon Walters (Stoke).
IRELAND 1 (St Ledger 19), CROATIA 3 (Mandzukic 3, 49; Jelavic 43)
June 10, Municipal Stadium, Poznan (Att: 39,550)
IRELAND – Given, O’Shea, Dunne, St Ledger, Ward, Duff, Andrews, Whelan, McGeady (Cox 54), Doyle (Walters 53), Keane (Long 75). Booked: Andrews 45.
CROATIA – Pletikosa, Srna, Corluka, Schildenfeld, Strinic, Rakitic (Dujmovic 92), Vukojevic, Modric, Perisic (Eduardo 89), Jelavic (Kranjcar 72), Mandzukic. Booked: Modric 53, Kranjcar 84.
REF – B Kuipers (Holland)
SPAIN 4 (Torres 4, 70; Silva 49; Fabregas 83), IRELAND 0
June 14, PGE Arena, Gdansk (Att: 39,150)
SPAIN – Casillas, Arbeloa, Pique, Ramos, Alba, Xavi, Busquets, Alonso (Martinez 65), Silva, Torres (Fabregas 74) Iniesta (Cazorla 80). Booked: Alonso 54, Martinez 76.
IRELAND – Given; O’Shea, Dunne, St Ledger, Ward, Duff (McClean76), Andrews, Whelan (Green 80), McGeady; Cox (Walters 46), Keane. Booked: Keane 36, Whelan 45, St Ledger 84.
REF – P Proenca (Portugal)
ITALY 2 (Cassano 35, Balotelli 90), IRELAND 0
June 18, Municipal Stadium, Poznan (Att: 38,794)
ITALY – Buffon, Abate, Barzagli, Chiellini (Bonucci 57), Balzaretti, Pirlo, Marchisio, Motta, De Rossi, Di Natale (Balotelli 74), Cassano (Diamanti 62). Booked: Balzaretti 28, De Rossi 71, Buffon 73.
IRELAND – Given, O’Shea, Dunne, St Ledger, Ward, McGeady (Long 65), Whelan, Andrews, Duff, Keane (Cox 86), Doyle (Walters 76). Booked: O’Shea 38, St Ledger 84, Andrews 37. Dismissed: Andrews 89
REF – C Cakir (Turkey)
SPAIN 4 (Silva 14; Alba 41; Torres 84; Mata 88), ITALY 0
July 1, Olympic Stadium, Kiev (Att: 63,170)
The Euros in numbers
60 – Tournament winners Spain’s averaged 60 per cent possession per game while Ireland recorded the lowest average at 39.5 per cent. In their match against Ireland, Spain achieved 76 per cent possession.
6 – Six players were tied for the golden boot. Mario Gomez, Mario Mandzukic, Mario Balotelli, Fernando Torres, Cristiano Ronaldo and Alan Dzagoev all registered a tournament hat-trick.
9 – Ireland conceded nine goals in all; only Yugoslavia (10) conceded more in the finals in 1984.
100 – Spain captain Iker Casillas ecame the first player to record 100 international wins during Euro 2012.
8 – Italy’s Antonio Cassano is substituted eight times at a European Championships after being named in the starting line-up, breaking the tournament record he shared with Dennis Bergkamp and Mario Gomez.
673 – Wayne Rooney ended a run of 673 minutes without a goal at major tournaments when he scored against Ukraine.
2012 in the headlines
Celtic Tiger’s demise continues to bite
EURO 2012 did little to lighten the nation’s mood as then-taoiseach Enda Kenny and a Fine Gael and Labour government continued to implement austerity measures. Fans were able to drown their sorrows with the average price of a pint costing €4.60 across the country, while the average asking price for a house had dropped to a record low of €214,000 following the crash. Businessman Sean Quinn (pictured), who was richest man in the Republic in 2008, suffered a reversal of fortunes during the downturn having been declared bankrupt in January before being sent to jail for contempt of court in November. Sport was soon forgotten two days before Ireland began their Euros campaign as two hotel workers were found not guilty of the tragic murder of Michaela McAreavey, the daughter of Tyrone manager Mickey Harte, in Mauritius. The tragic passing of Savita Halappanavar would raise the issue of Ireland’s abortion laws.
Sport that year
Taylor made for Olympic success
AFTER the disappointment of Euro 2012, the nation finally had a reason to be cheerful with Ireland’s success at the London Olympics. The boxers led the way with Katie Taylor taking gold as John Joe Nevin claimed silver and both Paddy Barnes and Michael Conlan secured bronze. Cian O’Connor won equestrian bronze, while Rob Heffernan would be upgraded to bronze in the 50km walk. Jim McGuinness engineered Donegal’s second All-Ireland triumph with their 2-11 to 0-13 win over Mayo. Henry Shefflin won his ninth of ten All-Ireland crowns in Kilkenny’s 3-22 to 3-11 hurling final replay win over Galway. Europe claimed Ryder Cup victory in the ‘Miracle of Medinah’ despite Rory McIlroy’s poor time-keeping which nearly saw him forfeit the opening hole on the last day.
Music and film That year
Gleeson guarding cinematic limelight
BRENDAN GLEESON enjoyed the critical success, which eluded Giovanni Trapattoni’s men, with the Dublin actor starring in the film ‘The Guard’ which was released that summer. Having won the public vote at home, Jedward represented Ireland for the second year in a row at Eurovision the month before the Euros. Europe, however, was less convinced as the twins finished 23rd with their song ‘Waterline.’
Tournament in quotes
"We were impotent. Conceding a goal at the start meant that we went to war without weapons and in this situation it is very difficult. But do I have to remind you that it had been 24 years since Ireland were at the European Championships? I must defend the job I have done because it is the truth that I have done well.”
– Giovanni Trapattoni (pictured) on his side’s campaign
“I don’t give a s**t who wins it now. I’m going on holiday”
– Zlatan Ibrahimovic after Sweden’s Euros exit
“You are looking for s***, you are looking for trouble. F*** you.”
– France’s Samir Nasri loses his cool with a journalist
“I have no problems sleeping at night. I don’t lie awake watching videos or DVDs. And when I sleep I dream that we win, and when I wake up, I wake up happy."
– Swedish boss Erik Hamren before the match against Ukraine
“I watched the game again last night. I was up to 4.30am”
– Erik Hamren following Sweden’s loss to Ukraine
The Nation Holds Its Breath Premium
Not only was Euro 2012 Ireland’s weakest performance at a major finals, the run of three defeats and the goal difference is the joint-worst outcome in the history of the European Championships, Giovanni Trapattoni’s side a beaten docket after one game.