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EC Qualification

  • September 6, 2011
  • • 16:00
  • • Olimpiyskiy stadion Luzhniki, Moskva
  • Referee: F. Brych
  • • Attendance: 49515

Russia 0-0 Republic of Ireland: Trapattoni's men earn credible draw in Moscow

Russia 0-0 Republic of Ireland: Trapattoni's men earn credible draw in Moscow

A combination of poor finishing from Russia and some impressive Irish defending saw the Group B sides play out a lacklustre draw in Euro 2012 qualifying

The Republic of Ireland had their defence to thank as Giovanni Trapattoni's men frustrated Russia to earn a valuable 0-0 draw in Moscow.

Russia dominated play throughout yet they could not find a way past the Irish, with Shay Given and Richard Dunne both putting in impressive performances on the Luzhniki stadium's artificial pitch.

Dick Advocaat's side remain at the top of Group B on 17 points while the Republic of Ireland sit in second, two points behind with qualification drawing to a close next month.

The home side started the brighter of the two nations and only a brilliant save from Shay Given stopped them from taking the lead in the eighth minute. Darren O'Dea's hesitant clearance fell to the feet of Andrey Arshavin, who saw his low 20-yard drive turned expertly around the post by the Irish goalkeeper.

Advocaat's men continued to look the likelier side to break the deadlock and came close again on 21 minutes. Alexander Kerzhakov's cross found Igor Semshov who struck his goalbound effort into the ground, forcing Given to parry the ball away from danger.

Republic of Ireland were on the backfoot again in the 33rd minute and had Richard Dunne to thank for a wonderful goal-line block. Yuri Zhirkov's jinxing run into the box saw the Anzhi Makhachkala winger cut the ball back to Semshov, who could only watch on in despair as Dunne somehow managed to direct the ball around the post off the line.

The second-half continued in similar vein with the home nation in the ascendancy and on 49 minutes, Roman Shirokov wasted a glorious chance to open the scoring. Arshavin slid a precise through ball to the midfielder who took too long to get his shot away with O'Dea making a smart block from 12 yards out.

Russia continued to press in the one-sided affair and were close to scoring an elusive winner on 85 minutes. Arshavin whipped an inviting set-piece into the box but Sergei Ignashevich's header could only find the side-netting.

It was not to be for the home side who missed their best chance of the game in the 89th minute. Shirokov's whirling cross into the box found the diving head of Konstantin Zyryanov, who saw his effort saved at point blank range by Given as the Irish defence scrambled the ball clear to earn what could be an important point.

Russia are next in Euro 2012 qualifcation action next month, travelling to Slovakia while the Republic of Ireland visit Andorra.