Austria 0 Ireland 1: Ireland player ratings
Malachy Clerkin runs the rule over the team that made Irish football history in Vienna
The Ireland team line up before their 1-0 win over Austria in their 2018 World Cup qualifier in Vienna. Photo: John Walton/PA
23 Darren Randolph
Rock solid. Smart early save from Janko when unsighted set the tone and kept out a stinger from Schaupf. Collected calmly from a handful of less dangerous efforts as the game went on.
2 Seamus Coleman
Must be a reassuring presence for the rest of his team. Foot perfect in possession and put in an excellent block on Arnautovic to snuff out a clear-cut Austrian chance in the first half.
15 Shane Duffy
Got in the referee’s bad books by jousting with Janko and saw yellow just before the break as a result. Went for everything in the air, both in defence and attack. A strong, if sometimes excitable, leader.
3 Ciaran Clark
Nipped in for a vital intercession in the chaos that followed Sabitzer hitting the bar in the first half. Otherwise, carried out his duties to the letter picking up the pieces around Duffy.
10 Robbie Brady
Suspect positioning let Sabitzer in for Austria’s best chance. In attack, produced a couple of brilliant balls in for Walters in the first half, to no avail. Misses the Wales game for a needless yellow.
Man of the match poll
6 Glenn Whelan
Very little involvement in the game before going off injured midway through the first half.
Rating: Not on long enough
18 David Meyler
Really fine game off the bench. Played a huge role in McClean’s goal, breaking up the Austrian attack and picking out Hoolahan. Picked out Hoolahan in behind the Austrian defence with a peach of a pass 10 minutes later.
8 Harry Arter
Entirely decent competitive debut. Struggled to get on the ball around the centre but was relentless in chasing down Alaba and Baumgartlinger, drawing the latter into a yellow card.
13 Jeff Hendrick
Another who was unable to show the best of himself in amongst the midfield ping-pong. Grew into the game though and made up a stern and sturdy midfield three with Meyler and Arter.
14 Wes Hoolahan
As ever, anything good went through him. Gave away more possession than usual but made up for it with the gorgeous pass for McClean’s goal. Also, his sublime touch put Brady away for the second Walters chance.
11 James McClean
Outstanding display from a player who is having a blinding campaign. Took his goal with total conviction and only just missed the top corner with a first-half shot on his right foot.
19 Jon Walters
Had two chances and missed them both. Neither was easy but they were going in during the last campaign. Ran his legs to nubbins though and pulled the entire Austrian defence out of position to make space for McClean’s goal.
David McGoldrick and Aiden McGeady weren’t on long enough for a rating.
Had a splendid night. Went for a brave selection by including Hoolahan in an away tie and got his just reward. Switched formations mid-game and Ireland gradually took more control of the midfield because of it. His team are in a great spot now and he deserves plenty of credit.