'It's a massive humiliation' - O'Shea
IT FELT like we had just witnessed a tsunami from the high rise balcony that is the press box. Afterwards, we had to head down in a metallic lift and sift through the wreckage.
You have to ask grown men, Irish internationals about being thrashed 6-1 in Dublin, about what should be the lowest moment in their careers. It cannot get any worse than this (well, defeat in the Faroes maybe).
“It’s a massive humiliation. There’s a way to lose a match and that wasnt the way to lose a game,” stand-in captain John O’Shea said afterwards.
“There is nothing we can say, we were outclassed,” said Toronto FC defender Darren O’Dea.
“Believe us, no one takes that lightly. It’s kind of a catch 22. At the minute there is no player in there who has got over it. We won’t get over it for a long time but we have to put it to one side because we have got a responsibility to win on Tuesday.
“We must go do that job (in the Faroes) and then think about it afterwards.”
We couldn’t help ourselves, it simply had to be asked: where did it all go wrong?
“In the first half we contained them, we certainly felt comfortable,” O’Dea responded. “We were just beaten by a much better team. Basically, they ran riot after that. It is hard to take just now.”
Has he ever had to bury such a beating and play another game a few days later?
“No, but strangely as a footballer it would be horrible if we had to leave on that note. At least we are together now. We can get over it together. We can stick together. We can put some of it right on Tuesday by getting a result. At least we don’t have to sit on it for months.”
Up the other end Jonathan Walters, not by his own doing, became a mere passenger, just like everyone else, watching the Germans run riot.
“I’ve never been in a game like that before where it’s been like that, never and hopefully never will be again,” said the Stoke City striker.
“They were doing what they wanted in the end. I think we were playing for second anyway (in the group),” Walters reasoned. “Germany were always going to be tough. They are one of the best teams in the world and they proved that tonight. It’s just about second spot now.”
One bright spark from the evening must be Séamus Coleman. The right back was hardly flawless but certainly looks capable of becoming a regular international footballer. Unlike many of his team-mates who were so obviously out of their depth.
“I found it hard to get near them,” he admitted. “They are top class players but no excuses. We have to forget about it. Dwell on it tonight, train and prepare for the Faroe Islands.
“Germany are probably the best side to play against – every one of them play for top-tier teams.
“They really showed it, taking those chances from the edge of the box. It is disappointing but we have to forget it as soon as possible.”
That is the problem. That the people watching might also forget. Forget about this team. A team that has been ravaged by injury and retirement since the summer.
“You can’t predict that (injuries),” said Coleman. “On the night we went into the game with confidence that we would get a result. It didn’t go to plan.”
6-1 is the Republic of Ireland’s worst ever competitive defeat? “We didn’t really think about that – all I know is it was not good enough. We have to move on.”