“It’s not the winning or the losing, it’s the taking part.” No, we’re not convinced either, but it’s a new day and there’s so much great football to come. Join in by tweeting @TheScore_ie or checking out our Facebook page.
11.45 – ‘THREE DEFEATS, NO points but – at the very, very least – a tiny element of pride restored.
‘Whatever about the eventual nature of the loss to Italy, it perhaps says a lot about the tournament as a whole that all of the results might have been a bit more acceptable had they panned out like this.
‘Sure, Ireland may have again been ultimately outclassed by a superior side. But, this time, they didn’t make it too easy for them.’
You can read the rest of the Miguel Delaney’s ‘small mercies’ piece right here.
11.59 – You could never accuse Eamon Dunphy of not being a good sport. Full story to follow…
(Credit: Evelyn O’Rourke)
12.33 – Keith Andrews – arguably the only Irish player to emerge from Euro 2012 with any credit* – has offered a brutal assessment of the side’s performance.
“It’s been bitterly disappointing. We said before the tournament we wanted to give a good account of ourselves and there was no point coming for the craic. We said that after we qualified against Estonia.
“To be perfectly frank, we simply weren’t good enough. We didn’t play as well as we could have.
“We played against some fantastic opposition but the bottom line is we weren’t good enough.”
*Apart from Seamus Coleman, James McCarthy, Keith Fahey, Kevin Foley, James McClean and Wes Hoolahan.
12.46 – Right, enough of that, on to FAR more important matters.
13.38 – It was an emotional farewell to Poznan for our man on tour, Cian O’Callaghan, as he and the Irish fans made the most of the Polish city before Ireland’s clash with Italy.
14.14 – In the debacle of Ireland’s Euro 2012 display, we can at least content ourselves with not being the worst.
Meanwhile, we’ve just come across this…
15.48 – Turning our attention to tonight’s games, it’s going to be Wayne Rooney’s first appearance of the tournament against Ukraine. We’re pretty sure it’s been on the news.
The Manchester United striker will likely be partnered by Danny Welbeck, with Andy Carroll dropping down to the bench. Seems harsh on the Liverpool man, who had a fine game against Sweden, but Rooney was always going to start.
Theo Walcott, meanwhile, is fit to start the game but the feeling among the British press is that Roy Hodgson will keep him back as an impact substitute. Worked last time.
16.04 – As predicted, no Walcott or Carroll. With the form those lads are in, it has the makings of a fine England bench.
16.35 – Wayne Rooney – he doesn’t like making himself a hostage to fortune, does he?
(YouTube credit: NikeFootball)
17.01 – In ‘it’s all very well to say it now’ news, Giovanni Trapattoni has denied being too loyal to the players that secured qualification for Euro 2012.
On the subject of retirements, he added: “I can say the names, but I won’t say the names. I am sure they need to stay with their families, I don’t know. But I said two months ago, it is important for us that these senior players help also the young to gain new experience. That’s life, it is not only football.
“The young are usually arrogant or shy and the senior players help them grow. That is life, it is not only football,” he said.
17.12 – Italy have a quarter-final to look forward to against either England or France. The Guardian reports Cesare Prandelli as saying that Mario Balotelli is going to have to curb his enthusiasm…
17.23 – Here is the full story on Paddy Power’s decision to cover the fine imposed on the greatest player in the world, according to Nicklas Bendtner.
17.26 – What magical, mystical force was at play here?
Probably alcohol. Lots and lots of booze.
17.28 – And with that, it’s time to take a break, regroup, and return for tonight’s final round of Group D matches. Whether you’re shouting for or against the Aul’ Enemy, it’s going to be good…