Malachy Clerkin’s Republic of Ireland player ratings
Jon Walters puts club issues behind him despite not scoring against Gibraltar
Republic of Ireland’s Wes Hoolahan in action during the Euro 2016 Group D qualifier against Gibraltar in Faro, Portugal. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho
Shay Given 7
The presumption that he wouldn’t have a save to make rendered his diving two-hander from Walker on 36 minutes positively world-class. Otherwise, spent much of the game screaming at his defence to get out of his area.
Had actually looked a bit clumsy and ill-at-ease up until his goal. Warmed to his task after it and saved a certain goal 10 minutes before the break with a last-ditch header. Will need to do more to nail down a spot as Seamus Coleman’s understudy.
John O’Shea 6
Snuffed out a dangerous three-on-two in the lead up to Keane’s tap-in just after half-time. Just as importantly, thoroughly savaged Christie for the mistake that caused the bother in the first place.
Mighty unlucky with an early header against the bar. Wasn’t really in the game otherwise, save for a couple of typically tasty challenges. Marc Wilson will most likely come back in on Monday though.
Had a spicy early free-kick well saved by Perez and was at the centre of Ireland’s most creative moments in the first half. Went out of things in the second as Ireland attacked down the right but did get in one splendid goal-saving tackle
James McCarthy 5
Another night where it was hard to discern exactly what his role is. Got ahead of Walters for one shot that Perez saved but offered a slender enough threat on the front foot apart from that.
Minded the house, such as it needed minding. But achieved precisely nothing going forward. Ireland needed someone forceful to link the play with the front three but Whelan wasn’t that man.
Stood up a lovely clipped cross for Long to head home Ireland’s fourth goal. But in keeping with the rest of the Ireland midfield, his interventions were fitful enough.
Ireland’s most creative player again, although he faded as the game wore on. Incredible crossfield ball for Keane was the highlight of the opening period, even if his captain couldn’t convert. Sent Christie away for his goal and his quick feet bought the penalty.
Played well without scoring. Not his night in front of goal. Fluffed a couple of early chances and had a goal disallowed for offside in the first half. Did well for Keane’s first goal but scuffed another bad miss with 15 to go.
Keeps on rolling along. Stuck another couple of goals on the pile, one from a couple of feet out, another a penalty. The fact that he was such an intermittent presence in the game apart from the goals surely means it’s pointless starting him in a bigger game though.
Shane Long (7) took his header with impressive force soon after coming on. Stephen Quinn (6) put himself about the place, Aiden McGeady (5) took far too much out of a promising situation with other players better placed.