Saturday 7 December 2019

Bardon wants Irish caught between Rock and hard place

Anthony Bardon
Anthony Bardon

Five straight defeats and four games in a row without a goal scored is hardly the form that breeds confidence for Gibraltar as they head to Dublin.

But Gibraltar midfielder Anthony Bardon, who has a family connection to Ireland via a Westmeath grandparent, says his side have the ability to cause Ireland a "scare" tonight.

Gibraltar were outclassed on their last visit here, beaten 7-0 in a Euro 2016 qualifier where they opted to replace their goalkeeper after an hour. It was a leggy-looking squad which arrived in Dublin on Saturday, having suffered a 3-0 loss in Tbilisi.

Double-headers will test any nation, away double-headers even more so, and it's a big ask for Gibraltar's part-time players to turn around and compete with Ireland tonight.

But Bardon, playing his last game for his nation this evening, feels they can come up with something, having restricted Mick McCarthy's side to one goal in Gibraltar in March.

"We took tremendous confidence from that game, Ireland are one of the top 40 countries in the world and that shows the progression we have made," said Bardon.

"I remember four years ago we lost here 7-0 and lost 4-0 at home, we look at the difference of how the team has progressed over the last four year.

"We have progressed hugely, especially under a manager who has given us the guidance to perform and want to get better every single day, we believe we can give Ireland trouble and get something out of it," added the US-based player with an Irish background.

"My grandfather was from Mullingar, he moved to London when he was a young boy.

"But we are here strictly to play football. I have to split the family in half, some for Ireland, but I am here for Gibraltar and we are here to give them a scare."

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