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Coleman laments 'sloppy' Irish performance by the Seine

‘Very few of us could come out of there with our heads held high.’

Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

IRELAND CAPTAIN SEAMUS Coleman found himself returning to the issue of passing inaccuracy in the wake of Ireland’s 2-0 loss to France in Paris last night.

Against a side who are fourth favourites to lift the World Cup in Russia this summer, Martin O’Neill’s men ended up with just a quarter share of possession.

And after conceding a goal through set-piece and goalkeeper error, the inability to hold onto the ball left Ireland well adrift of Les Bleus.

“We knew we had to defend for a lot of the night,” Coleman said post-match, “which is only normal against a team like that. I thought we did that quite well at times.

“To concede from a set-piece, and another goal that was maybe a little bit sloppy, is disappointing.

We’re just disappointed with how we were on the ball. We were a bit rash, a bit rushed and that goes for the 11 players that were out there tonight. We weren’t composed enough on the ball.”

“We knew it was going to be tough out of possession but we had a few chances to get the ball down but we lost it sloppily from the likes of throw-ins and it’s disappointing. The manager made us aware of that and we’ll have to look at it.”

Whatever O’Neill does to correct Ireland’s ongoing passing and chance-creation difficulties, Saturday’s friendly encounter with the USA could offer a more forgiving environment for the Boys in Green to show their skill-set. With the game ahead in mind, Coleman attempted to focus on the most positive aspects of a rain-soaked loss in Paris, but the captain couldn’t help but return to a lament for lost possession.

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“We had to keep grinding it out but we’re happy not to have conceded in the second half. It’s just an overall feeling of disappointment from that sloppiness on the ball.”

Asked about Colin Doyle’s performance, bouncing back after being unable to stop Nabil Fekir’s rasping 43rd minute shot, Coleman added: “We’re not going to point the finger at anyone. Very few of us could come out of there with our heads held high. It’s not just Colin, it was a few of us, myself included, who weren’t good enough on the ball.

Colin Doyle cannot stop a shot from Nabil Fekir Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

“We’ll take it on the chin, we need to improve and maybe on Saturday we’ll see a little bit more of the ball and show our composure a bit better.”

-Additional reporting by Ben Blake

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Sean Farrell

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