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James Crombie/INPHO RTÉ commentator George Hamilton.
# Behind the mic
RTÉ: George Hamilton to return to commentary duty despite absence for Portugal game
Darragh Maloney will commentate on the Republic of Ireland’s World Cup qualifier in Faro this evening.

LAST UPDATE | Sep 1st 2021, 12:42 PM

TONIGHT’S GAME AGAINST Portugal is set to be one of the very rare occasions that a Republic of Ireland fixture shown live on RTÉ won’t have George Hamilton on commentary.

Since a World Cup qualifier defeat to Denmark in November 1984, Hamilton has commentated on the vast majority of the Boys in Green’s major internationals.

The broadcaster announced yesterday that Darragh Maloney will be the commentator as Stephen Kenny’s side face the Portuguese (7.45pm kick-off), with Ronnie Whelan also set to describe the action from the Estadio Algarve.

However, Hamilton’s absence is merely temporary, with an RTÉ spokesperson telling The42 today that the 71-year-old is taking “a well-earned break” after a busy summer during which he was on duty at the European Championships and the Olympic Games.

Des Curran will provide commentary for Ireland’s game against Azerbaijan at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday, but Hamilton will return to the booth for Tuesday’s visit of Serbia to the Lansdowne Road venue.

Presented by Peter Collins, who’ll be joined in studio by Liam Brady and Didi Hamann, the live coverage of tonight’s game begins on RTÉ 2 at 7pm.

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