Republic of Ireland can do more than just defend, insists Del Bosque

The Boys in Green are well known as difficult to break down but the Spain coach had pointed out that Giovanni Trapattoni has plenty of attacking talent at his disposal
Spain coach Vicente del Bosque has dismissed the suggestion that the Republic of Ireland are incapable of hurting his side in an attacking capacity in Thursday's Group C clash in Gdansk.

Many pundits believe that Giovanni Trapattoni will send his troops out with sole intention of frustrating the reigning world and European champions in the hope of securing the point which would keep their Euro 2012 hopes alive.

That is not a view shared by Del Bosque, however, who argues that the Irish have several players capable of causing La Roja problems at the back.

"I am worried about every aspect of our opponents," the former Real Madrid coach told reporters in his pre-game press conference. "Ireland have more than just one threat.

"They have tall, strong players and are dangerous on the wings. Their attackers also offer a lot."

The last time the two nations met in a major tournament, at the 2002 World Cup, Spain only managed to prevail on penalties and Del Bosque is anticipating another gruelling encounter.

"They are a team that always competes well," he argued. "If we look at past meetings, we have never had a clear victory over Ireland.

"We are going to have difficulties in this game as in any other but we hope to be able to combat those difficulties."

Spain's clash with Ireland, who were beaten 3-1 by Croatia in their tournament opener, will kick off at 20:45CET.