Republic of Ireland 1 – 0 Scotland

Scotland suffered its only defeat in the Carling Nations Cup on Sunday, finishing tournament runner-up. The deciding Republic of Ireland v Scotland match finished 1-0 in favour of the hosts.

Both teams started the match with an unbeaten tournament record. With 2 victories each, both needing a victory to secure victory in the inaugural tournament.

Compared to previous matches the Irish were stronger and the Scottish weaker. Ireland added the experienced Darren O’Dea, Keith Fahey, Stephen Hunt and Liam Lawrence. Meanwhile Scotland had lost the in-form James Morrison and the experience of Gary Caldwell to injury.

Both teams started well. The ball was sent towards goal nets at both ends. However it was the Irish who broke the deadlock after some unfortunately loose playing by Scotland.

Robbie Keane was the man who broke the deadlock. Advancing from the centre of the field he kicked from the edge of the penalty box sending the ball under McGregor giving Keane his 49th goal for Ireland. 23 minutes gone and Scotland were a goal down. Despite some shots at the Irish goal from Adam and Naismith that was how the first half ended.

Envigorated by their lead the Irish started the second half enthusiastically. The hosts continued to pressure Scotland who held off further advances.

Play picked up when Barry Bannan replaced an injured Adam. However it was not enough an the match ended Republic of Ireland 1 – 0 Scotland.

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