Chris Coleman says Wales are starting to face expectations, but each game ‘will be about those 90 minutes’. Photograph:  Nick Potts/PA Wire

Welsh manager praises the experience within the Irish team over past 20 years

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O’Neill. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Three of first four matches away from home, two against key rivals Serbia and Austria

Austria’s David Alaba caused the Republic of Ireland all sorts of problems during the the World Cup 2014 qualification match at the Ernst Happel Stadium. Photograph: Christian Hofer/Getty Images.

Moldova are the only side Ireland are yet to play and will be somewhat of an unknown quantity

Former Russian international Alexander Kerzhakov draws out the  Republic of Ireland during the European zone draw for the 2018 World Cup. Photograph: Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Team faces trips to play Serbia, Moldova and Austria in run up to Christmas next year

Martin O’Neill has said he is pleased with ireland’s World Cup 2018 qualification group. Photograph: Reuters

Wales, Austria and Serbia offer the main threat to qualification hopes in Group D

 Aleksandr Kerzhakov draws Ireland in World Cup qualification Group D. Photograph: Reuters

Martin O’Neill’s side will face Wales, Austria, Serbia, Georgia and Moldova in Group D

The preliminary draw for  the World Cup qualifiers will take place in St Petersburg on Saturday. Photograph: EPA.

Position as fourth-tier nation looks likely to place boys in green in with top men of Europe

Preparations for the preliminary draw for 2018. Photograph: Reuters/Maxim Shemetov

Post-Sepp Blatt planning continues, but not one major deal has been signed

Action from the first leg of the Uefa Europa League second qualifying round first leg at Stadion Pasienky in Bratislava. Photograph: Robert Tappert/Inpho/Sita

Students face Slovan Bratislava at Belfield after tight 1-0 defeat in Slovakia

Dundalk’s Richie Towell reacts after he conceded a late free against BATE Borisov in the Uefa Champions League second qualifying round second leg at  Oriel Park. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Belarus side let their European experience show at Oriel Park

Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny: “We’re looking to absolutely outplay them at home. That’s our ambition.” Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Dundalk manager believes his side can put on a fitting show for a packed Oriel Park

John Delaney and FAI executives at the FAI agm in Sligo.  Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Director of finance suggests debt-free days still some way off for association

FAI cheif executive John Delaney addressed the organisation’s 89 delegates at the AGM this afternoon. Photo: James Crombie/INPHO

Chief executive John Delaney made his speech at the organisation’s AGM today

Martin O’Neill will travel to St Petersburg for the World Cup draw. Photograph: Ian Walton/Getty Images

Republic of Ireland manager confirms he was approached by old club Leicester

John Delaney’s general avoidance of journalists whose job it is to cover football does not inspire much confidence. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

FAI chief lectures on transparency but his tenure is betrayed by a glaring lack of it

Holders St Pat’s play Cork City in the FAI Cup third round. Photograph: Inpho

Tolka Rovers and Killester United tie ensures non-league representation in last eight

Martin O’Neill says he was never interested in a return to the Premier League. Photograph: Inpho

Irish boss was heavily linked to now occupied vacancy at former club Leicester City

Olivier Occean celebrates opening the scoring for Odd Ballklubb in their Europa League tie with Shamrock Rovers at Tallaght Stadium. Photo: Lorraine O’Sullivan/INPHO

Second half brace from Odd Ballklubb striker sees off Pat Fenlon’s side

Shamrock Rovers manager Pat Fenlon cannot call on his three former Republic of Ireland internationals. Photograph: Gary Carr/Inpho.

Even without his three most experienced players, Shamrock Rovers manager remains confident

 Arturo Vidal is one of five Juventus players  on the  shortlist for this year’s Best Player in Europe. Photograph: Juan Mabromata/AFP/Getty Images

Italian club have five of the 10 nominations while Barca frontline also included

Pat Fenlon can improve the professionalism at Shamrock Rovers. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Former Irish international to be considered anywhere across the attacking line

Damien Duff at the end of Ireland’s defeat to Croatia at Euro 2012. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Former Ireland and Chelsea winger agrees 18-month contract

Gareth Bale celebrates after scoring the opening goal against Belgium in the European Championship Group B clash in Cardiff. Photograph: Stu Forster/Getty

Patient hard work by the Welsh FA and the top clubs is finally bearing fruit

Ireland Manager Martin O’Neill will be allowed to leave for Leicester City. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Republic of Ireland manager linked with possible approach from former club after sacking of Nigel Pearson

Skonto Riga’s Vladislavs Sorokins celebrates scoring his side’s  first goal in the  Uefa Europa League first qualifying round second leg against St Patrick’s Athletic  at Richmond Park. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Liam Buckley’s side threatened in first half before visitors put tie beyond reach

Conan Byrne is in line to play for St Patrick’s Athletic in their Europa League second-leg match against Skonto Riga. Photograph:   Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Liam Buckley’s side look to build on away goal against Skonto Riga in Inchicore

Sligo Rovers caretaker manager Gavin Dykes: “I still believe that the group is good enough to get out of this.” Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Steven Beattie heads to Cork as Billy Dennehy looks set to exit following public spat

Kieran Marty Waters of Shamrock Rovers celebrates scoring his sides third goal against Progres Niederkorn in their Europa League clash at Tallaght Stadium. Photo: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

Rovers looked comfortable as they advanced to the next round of the Europa League

Mick Cooke has been appointed Bray Wanderers manager after Trevor Croly left his post last week. Photo: Donall Farmer/INPHO

The 63-year-old takes over after Trevor Croly’s departure last week

Speculation has been growing that Shamrock Rovers are ready to sign former Ireland international Damien Duff but Pat Fenlon has been keen to avoid talking about it. Photo: Donall Farmer/INPHO

After a scoreless first leg in Luxembourg Past Fenlon is confident his side can progress

Shelbourne will be welcome at Dalymount Park in the event that the club can resolve its difficulties with leaving Tolka Park. Photograph: Inpho

‘We need to get away from this idea that for one club to be content another has to suffer’

 Trevor Croly (left) with Philly McMahon during the manager’s time at former club Shamrock Rovers: his brief spell in charge of Bray had seen the club claim seven points from five games.  Photo: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Assistant boss John Gill also leaves after a falling out over non-payment of wages

Dundalk players celebrate John Mountney’s late  winner in the SSE Airtricity League Premier Division match against Drogheda United at   United Park. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Drogheda’s game-plan almost pays off before champions strike late at United Park

Bohemians’ members  have approved the €3.8 million sale of Dalymount Park to Dublin City Council. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Dublin City Council deal a good one ‘for Bohemians and for the city of Dublin’

Drogheda United manager Johnny McDonnell: his side have taken just short of half of the 21 points they currently have thanks to three wins and a draw in their last four games. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Stephen Kenny’s side have the opportunity to go six points clear at the top of the table

Ryan Swan celebrates opening the scoring for UCD in their Europa League first qualifying round first leg against F91 Dudelange at  UCD Bowl. Photograph:   Dan Sheridan/Inpho

F91 Dudelange dominate first half but Students dig in for Europa League qualifier first leg win

Cork City’s Billy Dennehy was on the mark against Derry in team’s last outing. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

John Caulfield says his side are ready to pounce on any complacency in KR Reykjavik

St Patrick’s Athletic’s Ger O’Brien: “The lads have been playing well lately. It’s been good, we’ve scored a few, created a lot of chances and not conceded too many.” Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Liam Buckley’s side in good form as they begin their European adventure in Latvia

UCD’s Chris Mulhall who will be in action etc Photograph: Inpho

Students entertain F91 Dudelange of Luxembourg in first leg

Peter Cassells: “There was actually a point where Dick Spring asked for that Monday to be declared a public holiday but Charlie Haughey basically told him to go to hell.”

Bosses had no choice but to be more flexible, remembers Peter Cassells

Jack Charlton with Arnold O’Byrne (left) and Brian Lenihan.

Jack Charlton was ready to quit over sponsorship row with players

Niall Quinn of Ireland scores the qualiser past Hans Van Breukelen of Holland. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Quinn’s equaliser totally transformed Something Happens’ gig in the US

Charles  Haughey walks towards the fans after the Republic of Ireland’s defeat to Italy in Rome. “I didn’t go on that trip no but he took a whole lot of people, including a lot of opposition people; he took Alan Dukes, I think, and De Rossa, they all went out on the government jet. It was a big story at the time.”

PJ Mara recalls how the European Council was delayed as more important matters set the agenda

Packie Bonner makes his save during the shootout against Romania. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

‘I felt that it was important for us to get off to a good start, so as soon as the whistle went I said to the lads, I’ll take the (...)

John Delaney speaks to the press after Ireland’s playoff defeat to France which saw Thierry Henry’s handball and lead to a €5 million Fifa payment to the FAI. Photo: Dara Mac Donaill

The FAI’s turnover for last year is up slightly, to €38 million from €36.6 million

Shamrock Rovers manager Pat Fenlon: brings his side to Galway, then to Luxembourg for a Europa League tie on Tuesday. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Shamrock Rovers facing a particularly pressing schedule

Ireland players have rubbished suggestions made in an Argentinian newspaper that they were paid $10,000 each in return for Lionel Messi emerging from 2010’s friendly game at the Aviva unscathed. Photograph: Getty

Argentinian newspaper claims Irish players were paid $10,000 not to injure Messi in 2010 friendly

Dundalk player Daryl Horgan was presented with the SSE Airtricity/SWAI Player of the Month award for May on Tuesday.  Photograph: Matt Browne/Sportsfile

Dundalk midfielder (22) winning the award makes it a three in a row for the club

Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny secured Champions League success over BATE Borisov during his time with Bohemians. Photo: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Manager was in charge at Bohemians when they knocked out Belarusian side

James McClean heads a late chance wide as Ireland desperately searched for a winner against Scotland at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Martin O’Neill’s optimism rings hollow after lack of guile allows Scots to earn point

Republic of Ireland defender John O’Shea at the final whistle of the Euro 2016 qualifying game against Scotland at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho.

Veteran defender says next two games are now must-win matches

Jonathan Walters celebrates after giving the Republic of Ireland a 1-0 lead in the Euro 2016 Group D qualifier against Scotland at the Aviva Stadium. Photo:   Cathal Noonan/Inpho

John O’Shea own goal at the beginning of the second half wipes out Jon Walters’s goal

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O’Neill and his Scottish counterpart Gordon Strachan during the Euro 2016 qualifier at Celtic Park last November. Photograph: Getty

If key players fail to perform again Ireland can forget about going to France 2016

Martin O’Neill says Robbie Keane will decide on his involvement ahead of Ireland’s Euro 2016 qualifier against Scotland on Saturday. Photograph: Inpho

Martin O’Neill says Keane trained again despite family suffering double tragedy

James McClean answers reporters’ questions yesterday. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Sour times may be over for the Wigan winger if O’Neill starts him tomorrow

Roy Keane at Ireland’s training ground in Malahide yesterday: “We’re not daft, we know what’s at stake but we’re ready for it.” Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Corkman is adamant Ireland have what it takes to come out on top this time

Robbie Keane took full part in Ireland training on Friday despite the death of his cousin on Thursday. Photograph: Inpho

Keane recovered from groin injury but there are question marks over his match fitness

“I like the big games and the expectation and hopefully I can put in a good performance at the weekend and show it,” says Ireland’s Robbie Brady ahead of Scotland game. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho.

Republic of Ireland left back looking to emulate the exploits of Ian Harte

Republic of Ireland boss Martin O’Neill addresses the assembled media at Gannon Park, Malahide. “It’s up to us to win. I’m not minimising the importance of the game.” Photo: Cathal Noonan/INpho

Manager hoping Robbie Brady’s deliveries will pose problems for the visitors

Martin O’Neill speaks to the press ahead of Ireland’s crucial qualifier against Scotland this Saturday. Photo: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

Bournemouth midfielder Harry Arter manager’s main concern ahead of qualifier

Conor McNamara in Porto Alegre during last summer’s World Cup: ‘I used to feel intimidated but when you’ve been around long enough, longer than almost all of the managers, you kind of start to feel,yeah, this is my domain.’

Even as a child BBC commentator preferred relaying the action

FAI chief executive John Delaney: remains at the centre of a  storm over the controversial deal with Fifa. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Chief executive Stewart Regan describes the basis of the €5m payout as ‘ludicrous’

James Cottle, organiser of the Docklands 5k, runs along the quays in Dublin. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

From disgruntled residents to traffic-cone hire, race director James Cottle is finally on the home run

 Paul McShane in action against England’s Jamie Vardy  during the international friendly game at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Defender says Republic will be firing on all cylinders against Scotland

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O’Neill answers questions from the media at a squad training session at Gannon Park in Malahide. Photo: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Squad takes break from training as Martin O’Neill considers Saturday’s line-up

FAI chief executive John Delaney with his partner Emma English at the Ireland-England game at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

FAI received €10m loan from Uefa in 2013, €8.5m of which remains outstanding

Ireland’s Robbie Brady gets between Raheem Sterling and the ball at the Aviva Stadium yesterday. Photograph:  Lee Smith/Reuters

Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling under Hull man’s thumb in Aviva stalemate

Republic of Ireland striker  Daryl Murphy heads at goal during the friendly international against England at the Aviva Stadium. Photo: Eddie Keogh/Reuters/Livepic

Martin O’Neill’s side with the best of the few chances created at the Aviva

Jonathan Walters tussles for the ball with Ryan Bertrand. Photo: Eddie Keogh/Reuters

The Stoke player praised Robbie Brady’s deliveries

Former Republic of Ireland manager  Giovanni Trapattoni. Photo:  Dominic Ebenbichler/Reuters

‘I just know that when he gave me his hand, I did not give mine because I do not have two faces’

John O’Shea has said the only redress the players would have been interested in after Ireland’s controversial elimination by France in Paris six years ago would have been another game, not any share of €5 million secured by the FAI from Fifa during the weeks that followed. Photograph: Donall Farmer/INPHO.

Sunderland defender says ‘important thing is FAI has been as open as possible about what happened’

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O’Neill during a squad training session at the Aviva Stadium. Photo: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

All that other stuff happening off the pitch is of no concern to the Corkman

John Delaney said the compensation was agreed on the basis of Fifa’s “real concerns” over the strength of the FAI’s legal claim. Photograph: Inpho

Legal claim based on seedings and Blatter’s mockery, says FAI chief executive

French defender William Gallas scores  the decisive goal against Ireland in the World Cup 2010 qualifying play-off in Paris. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

FAI release documents covering €5million Fifa payoff

The payment from Fifa followed the Republic of Ireland’s extra-time play-off defeat to France in Paris when Thierry Henry intentionally handled the ball in the build-up to the game’s decisive goal. Photograph: Getty Images

No specific record in FAI accounts of money handed over by world soccer governing body

Republic of Ireland full-back Stephen Wrad has won 29 international caps since his debut against Northern Ireland in May 2011. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/ Inpho.

Full-back out for redress after difficult season at Burnley with relegation and injury

France captain Thierry Henry handles the ball ahead of William Gallas’s goal which knocked Ireland out of World Cup 2010 qualification during the play-off in Paris in 2009. Photograph: Reuters.

Avoiding legal dispute on the back of Thierry Henry’s handball given as reason for ‘legitimate agreement’

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O’Neill talks to his players during squad training at the Aviva Stadium on Wednesday. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho.

Informal game aimed at English Championship players’ fitness levels

Marc Wilson shadows Harry Arter during the Republic of Ireland’s  training session at Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

Ahead of Sunday week’s clash defender keeps repeating three points mantra

John Delaney is backing Michel Platini to replace Sepp Blatter. Photo: EPA

‘We’re not finished yet because the FBI will not stop their investigation’

Fifa president Sepp Blatter exits the federation’s top job. Photograph: EPA

Federation chief concludes turbulent 17-year reign at hastily convened press conference

 Republic of Ireland and Everton midfielder Aiden McGeady, pictured   at the FAI Future Football programme launch with Tadhg Scanlon, Rachel and Sarah Fitzmaurice, Callum Carroll, Isobel O’Kane, Evan O’Kane and Conor Scanlon, hopes to end his season on a high with victory over Scotland. Photograph: David Maher/Sportsfile

Everton and Ireland player looking forward to the chance to end the season on a high

Harry Arter sat out Irish training ahead of the England friendly. Photo: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Martin O’Neill’s squad update ahead of Sunday’s friendly with England

Sepp Blatter’s fifth term as Fifa president has lasted just four days with the 79-year-old announcing that he is to resign. Photograph: Getty Images

Swiss chief will not actually depart football’s top job for at least six months

Jeff Hendrick, Harry Arter and Seamus Coleman during training at a cold Gannon Park in Malahide yesterday. Photo: Donall Farmer/Ipho

Republic’s boss says players will relish taking on England and then Scotland

Daryl Murphy: “I was delighted to get back in the squad after being out so long.” Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Ipswich striker credits Ireland recall from O’Neill with kickstarting his run of form

Republic of Ireland squad training at Malahide ahead of the upcoming England friendly. Photo: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Northerner hopes enough time had passed to make the 1995 riot an irrelevance

Set for the Airtricity League? Damien Duff at the Beacon Hospital,   Dublin, on Sunday at the launch of a sports medicine initiative by    the hospital in association with First Ireland. Photograph: David Maher/Sportsfile

At same Dublin event, John O’Shea insists Ireland can deliver victory over Scotland

Falling off football’s merry-go-round

Veteran Fifa president Sepp Blatter shakes hands with Uefa president Michel Platini after being re-elected on Friday. Photograph: Getty Images

English FA supremo Greg Dyke again raises prospect of a European World Cup boycott

Dalymount Park: Inpho

Ground to become a major public amenity for the Phibsborough area

Killian Brennan of St Patrick’s Athletic  battles with  Stephen McPhail of Shamrock Rovers during the  FAI  Cup second round match at  Richmond Park. Photo: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Goals from Conan Byrne and Jason McGuinness puts an end to Rovers’ hope of 25th title

Fifa president Sepp Blatter arrives at the 65th Fifa congress in Zurich, Switzerland where he  is expected to be re-elected  despite growing calls for his resignation amid a corruption scandal that has engulfed the sport’s governing body. Photograph: Ruben Sprich/Reuters

Michel Platini’s intervention not enough to thwart president’s bid for fifth term

UEFA president Michel Platini addresses a news conference in Zurich. ‘Platini made the case that the only way he [Blatter] could be removed is by votes or by court action.’  Photograph: Ruben Sprich/Reuters.

Prince Ali and his supporters claim to have 60 votes from outside Europe

Fifa president Sepp Blatter has been instructed, along with all Fifa’s Swiss employees, not to leave the jurisdiction until told otherwise. Photograph: Philipp Schmidli/Getty Images

The decision to award the 2022 World Cup to Qatar may have been tipping point

Sepp Blatter: Still has the upper hand in his battle to stay on top of world football’s governing body. Photograph: Philipp Schmidli/Getty Images

The Fifa president’s ability to stay cool under fire is once again on show

FAI chief John Delaney: “There is always controversy around Fifa and its decision and its governance and the one person who has always been at the head of that for a long time is Sepp Blatter.” Photograph: Arthur Carron/Collins

Delaney hints at possible boycott of tournaments if Sepp Blatter doesn’t step down

FIFA officials are escorted out behind sheets following their arrests by Swiss authorities at the Baur au Lac hotel in Zurich on Wednesday. The US has filed federal charges alleging corruption over two decades. Photograph: Pascal Mora/The New York Times

Suspects face 47 criminal counts for accepting bribes of more than $150m

FAI chief John Delaney was contacted the Irish Congress of Trade Unions general secretary Patricia King over the treatment of labourers in Qatar building the facilities for the 2022 World Cup. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Ictu calls for ‘discrimination’ and ‘slavery’ of workers to be addressed

FAI chief John Delaney: “Blatter has had a hell of a run at it. But surely he knows . . . that outside of the voting chambers that the world, the football public, the players and supporters want change.” Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

FAI chief calls for change in Fifa and praises Michel Platini’s openness to new ideas

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