Republic of Ireland supporters rewarded for good behaviour during Euro 2012

After suffering a torrid tournament on the pitch, the Irish fans are to be honoured for their good and trouble-free nature during this summer’s tournament in Ukraine and Poland

Republic of Ireland fans have been recognised for their good conduct during Euro 2012 by Uefa president Michel Platini.

In a tournament which has been a number of fines handed out for crowd problems and anti-social behaviour, the Irish supporters have been praised for their friendly nature.

Gianni Infantino, Uefa's secretary general elaborated: "Everyone was very impressed by the Ireland fans.

"The team's results were mitigated by the fans. UEFA president Michel Platini will go to Ireland to give the award."

The award will be dedicated to James Nolan, the 21-year-old Ireland fan who tragically died in Bydgoszcz during the tournament.

The decision to honour Nolan with the award has delighted his father, Jimmy, who commented: “I am deeply touched by this.

“It is a great honour and I would like to thank the amazing support that we have received at this difficult time from supporters in Ireland every part of the world.”

Euro 2012 was the first major tournament the Republic of Ireland qualified for since the World Cup of 2002 in Japan and South Korea when they also took a loud and good-natured following.

And the president of the Football Association of Ireland (FAI), Paddy McCaul believes the award is well deserved.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Uefa president Michel Platini for his decision to recognise the incredible support that our fans showed during the tournament,” he added.

“They were a credit to the country and won praise everywhere they went in Poland, striking up a great relationship with everyone they met.

“I am glad that the award will be dedicated to James Nolan whose passing has touched us all.”

And FAI chief executive John Delaney echoed the views of McCaul, citing the supporters’ “commitment” in the face of the team’s on-field troubles after losing all three of their games.

“Irish supporters deserve this award for their incredible commitment, behaviour and friendliness during the tournament,” McCaul said.

“They did the country proud and added something really special to the championships. I thank Uefa for their recognition and I am glad that the award will be accepted by James Nolan’s parents whose tragic loss left all Irish fans deeply saddened after the tournament.”

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