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Dublin: 11°C Saturday 27 February 2021

Trapattoni expecting no walkovers in Poland

The Spanish may be tired and the Italians in disarray but the Ireland manager isn’t getting ahead of himself.

Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni at the ceremony.
Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni at the ceremony.
Image: INPHO/Donall Farmer

GIOVANNI TRAPATTONI AND his assistant Marco Tardelli were centre-stage in the Tuscan town of Montecatini yesterday evening.

But they know their Ireland side will play second fiddle to some of football’s biggest stars at this month’s European Championships.

The Boys in Green will train in Budapest tonight ahead of tomorrow night’s final friendly game against Hungary.

But before their departure this morning, the Irish management team took part in a question and answer session in the town square.

“Spain are world champions, and we know the two most famous teams in Europe are Real Madrid and Barcelona and that the players in the national team mainly come from those two teams,” Trap said while interviewed during a question-and-answer session at the foot of the steps of the Basilica di Santa Maria Assunta.

“They are the favourites. In each department, in defence, in midfield and in attack, they have amazing players. We know Italy and, despite what we have heard in the past few days and despite the result from last night, Italy is a nation and a team that has always achieved good results.

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“They are very creative and they have players who are used to playing at a very high level, and this means they have a very strong background, so the match last night, I wouldn’t base anything on that.

Giovanni Trapattoni is taken away in a police car to avoid the crowds at the reception. Pic: INPHO/Donall Farmer

“Croatia are unpredictable because when we think of these nations who were originally part of Yugoslavia and now are independent, they are living a second life and they are very, very strong.”

Ireland face Croatia in their group opener in seven days’ time before taking on the Spanish and then Italy. Hundreds watched as the pair were interviewed and then added to a walkway of fame.

Check out TheScore’s Euro 2012 mini-site here>

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