herald

Sunday 19 August 2018

Trap hails battling spirit of warriors Hunt and O'Dea

Giovanni Trapattoni paid a glowing tribute to his players and had another swipe at the no-shows after a remarkable win over Italy in Liege.

Goals from Keith Andrews and Simon Cox left the Azzuri reeling. And Trap was quick to heap praise on heroes Darren O'Dea (right) and Stephen Hunt (left) for playing through the pain barrier, leaving James McCarthy, Darron Gibson and Marc Wilson in no doubt about their position.

"After the first visit to the doctor they told me we might have to send Darren and Stephen home, but they understood we needed them," said Trapattoni.

"You sometimes have to suffer through injury and play. But they have heart and a lot of Irish players have this quality.

"There are those who do not have the heart to be here. I'm not talking about players like Duff, O'Shea and Kilbane, but about those who could have been here if they wanted to."

Victory over Italy brought the curtain down on a controversial but ultimately successful end-of-season program, which sets Ireland up nicely for the final four games of the Euro 2012 qualifying campaign.

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