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'They have some really ordinary players' -- Dunphy insists Ireland can beat Germany

The pundit says the retirement of several stars has weakened Joachim Löw’s side considerably.

Dunphy has called for Shane Long's inclusion in Ireland's starting XI.
Dunphy has called for Shane Long's inclusion in Ireland's starting XI.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

Updated at 18.15

EAMON DUNPHY SAYS he is convinced Ireland can beat Germany at the Aviva Stadium next month, despite not many critics fancying the Boys in Green’s chances against the world champions.

Speaking on Game On, the pundit says the retirement of several players after last summer’s World Cup has weakened Joachim Löw’s side considerably.

“I think we could beat Germany, the lads [John Giles and Liam Brady] think that’s funny.

“Scotland scored two goals against them. If you saw the lads they had on the pitch the other night, you would not believe it.

“Özil at Arsenal, Schweinsteiger can’t pick his legs up, Götze who’s not in the team at Bayern Munich… They have some really ordinary players, and this is Germany. Philipp Lahm and all their top players have retired… Take [Thomas] Müller out of their team and they’d be very average.

“So if we get our act together and have a bit of belief, and start looking at the game and demanding more of ourselves, I think we can be in France.”

Dunphy called for the inclusion of James McClean, Shane Long and Stephen Quinn in the starting XI in future selections, and while acknowledging that Glenn Whelan played well against Georgia, Dunphy suggested midfield was still Ireland’s main problem.

“The problem our team has is that McCarthy and Whelan are the midfield. That’s where you generate attitude, tempo and purpose in the field.

“If it’s not happening, it’s never going to happen. And those two guys will never make it happen.

“Stephen Quinn plays at a higher tempo, gets tackles in, whereas these guys don’t get tackles in. We’re carrying 15 stone on our back with those two guys in horse-racing terms.

“Away from home, when you sit, the way Whelan and McCarthy like to sit, it’s not so bad, because you don’t have to win sometimes, but at home, it’s fatal.”

On the poor attendance at the Aviva Stadium on Monday night, Dunphy added:

“Everyone has to watch the money, and the way football has gone, it’s for people who have spare money. And a lot of people don’t have spare money, and they don’t have spare money to watch Georgia. I would say that’s a big part of it.

“I think the average soccer fan is sick of the way the team’s been playing — even against Gibraltar, we were terrible.

“You can’t fool the public — you can’t sell bad product.”

Originally published at 4.11pm

Analysis: How Ireland’s Shane Long changed the game against Georgia>

It turns out Manchester United spent far less on Bastian Schweinsteiger than first thought>

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Paul Fennessy

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