Tag Archives: sousa

Australian Open 2013: Andy Murray beats Joao Sousa

Murray races to straight-sets victory over Sousa as Brit sends out warning to rivals

PUBLISHED:

04:07 GMT, 17 January 2013

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UPDATED:

04:18 GMT, 17 January 2013

Andy Murray made short work of Joao Sousa to cruise into the third round of the Australian Open.

The Scot was in imperious form from the start as he overwhelmed his opponent who is ranked at No 100 in the world.

Murray wasted little time in winning 6-2, 6-2, 6-4.

More to follow…

Marching on: Andy Murray eased into the third round of the Australian Open

Marching on: Andy Murray eased into the third round of the Australian Open

Barmy army: Murray's fans cheer him on as he takes an early lead against Joao Sousa

Barmy army: Murray's fans cheer him on as he takes an early lead against Joao Sousa

Feeling the heat: Murray cools down inbetween games as he heads for the third round

Feeling the heat: Murray cools down inbetween games as he heads for the third round

Overwhelmed: Sousa had no chance against Murray as the world No 100 struggled in Melbourne

Overwhelmed: Sousa had no chance against Murray as the world No 100 struggled in Melbourne

All smiles: Murray's girlfriend Kim Sears watches on as the British No 1 cruised to victory

All smiles: Murray's girlfriend Kim Sears watches on as the British No 1 cruised to victory

Mum's the word: Judy Murray arrives to watch her son in action a the Australian Open

Mum's the word: Judy Murray arrives to watch her son in action a the Australian Open

Phillip Yau Wing Choi dead: Second fatality at Macau Grand Prix

Second fatality rocks Macau as Hong Kong racer Yau Wing Choi is killed in qualifying

PUBLISHED:

14:16 GMT, 16 November 2012

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UPDATED:

14:16 GMT, 16 November 2012

This weekend's motor sport action in Macau has been marred by a second fatality in less than 24 hours after a local touring car driver was killed in qualifying at the Asian street circuit.

Phillip Yau Wing Choi, from Hong Kong, succumbed to injuries suffered in a crash at Mandarin Bend in qualifying for the Macau Touring Car Cup, a support race to this weekend's Macau Grand Prix.

The incident comes a day after Portuguese motorcycle rider Luis Filipe de Sousa Carreira died after a crash at Fisherman's Bend at the Guia circuit.

Tragedy: Carreira died from injuries sustained in his crash on Thursday

Tragedy: Carreira died from injuries sustained in his crash on Thursday

'The Macau Grand Prix Committee regrets to announce that Phillip Tau Wing Choi… has succumbed to injuries sustained in a racing accident during the qualifying session this afternoon,' read a statement by race organisers.

'The incident occurred at Mandarin Bend at 13.11. The qualifying session was immediately red flagged.

'After the incident, two fully-equipped rescue cars were at the scene, followed by the extrication car. The position of the racing car required cutting in order to facilitate extrication. At 13.19, the competitor was removed from the car, and at 13:20 Mr Yau was transported by ambulance to hospital where he was admitted at 13.24.

'Continuous CPR was performed however he succumbed to his injuries at 13.51.

'The Macau Grand Prix Committee has contacted the family and the members of the team. The Committee expresses its sincere condolences.'

The annual Macau meeting attracts competitors from all over the world to compete in a range of categories, and is the blue riband event of both the Formula Three and World Touring Car Championships.

Richard Hughes crowned champion jockey

Hughes is champion after his years of frustration

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UPDATED:

21:47 GMT, 10 November 2012

Richard Hughes, four times a runner-up in the race to be crowned Britain's champion flat jockey, was celebrating at last after landing the 2012 title.

Hughes, accompanied to the podium by his son, Harvey, to receive his trophy at Doncaster, said: 'It's a great feeling, much better than runner-up!'

Daddy cool: Richard Hughes and his son Harvey

Daddy cool: Richard Hughes and his son Harvey

A stream of winners from Richard Hannon consistently boosted Hughes, 39, on the way to the top with multiple winners Libranno, Havana Gold and Toronado contributing to his final tally of 172 winners – 41 more than second-placed Silvestre de Sousa.

Andre Villas-Boas will succeed at Spurs, says Paulo Sousa

AVB can succeed at Spurs but only if fans and chairman let him, says countryman Sousa

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UPDATED:

16:12 GMT, 5 September 2012

Fantasy football 2012

Paulo Sousa expects Andre Villas-Boas to be a success at Tottenham – but only if the supporters and chairman Daniel Levy retain faith in his philosophy.

The former Swansea, QPR and Leicester manager is generating success on a tight budget in Hungary, with Videoton, who have qualified for the Europa League and he is proud of the international achievement of Portuguese coaches in the recent years in the trail of Jose Mourinho.

Give him time: Paulo Sousa is confident Andre Villas-Boas can succeed at Spurs

Give him time: Paulo Sousa is confident Andre Villas-Boas can succeed at Spurs

He believes AVB can extend the record of success despite a faltering start at Spurs which has led to jeers from fans and questions from players who are unsure of his methods.

Sousa said: 'It is difficult for anyone to be Tottenham manager after Harry Redknapp. He is very popular in England and at Tottenham, with fans and players and the media.

'Then you're looking for the right profile of players to set out his own football identity and ideas and this takes time. The method of training will be different to what it was under Redknapp.

'If you get positive results it becomes easier, of course, because the convictions will become stronger but there are difficulties at the beginning of each process.

'I'm sure AVB will achieve success at Spurs if he gets time and support. If you identify all Portuguese coaches – not only Andre – our football education, our methods and ideas, will get success.

'In my opinion, January will be a fair time to judge.'

The same is true of Brendan Rodgers, another manager trying to implement fundamental style changes under the pressure of expectation at Liverpool.

'He has not changed as a coach because he moved from Swansea to Liverpool,' said Sousa.

'If his ways have won before, they will win again.

Feeling the heat: Villas-Boas has taken two points from his first three games

Feeling the heat: Villas-Boas has taken two points from his first three games

'When you sign a particular type of player, he sometimes doesn't suit the football philosophy at his new club and it's a big mistake when you make these decisions.

'One of the most difficult things for Brendan to achieve will be to change the culture of the fans. They are used to football that is different to the football he wants to put on the pitch.

'This is really hard to change at Liverpool. Fans are used to watching very competitive players with importance on block defending and a quick rhythm to the game with lots of action in the box.

'If the fans back him and want to change the way they see the game, they will be satisfied with his work.

'When the club owners took the decision, they knew Brendan's profile as a coach. I'm sure Brendan will be successful and with the understanding of the fans at the start he could be there for 20 years.'

Sousa speaks with experience of knee-jerk reactions from two of the most notorious sackers in the English game.

He survived only five months before he was axed by Flavio Briatore at QPR and four months before Milan Mandaric fired him at Leicester.

Held at home: Spurs could only manage a 1-1 draw with Norwich on Saturday

Held at home: Spurs could only manage a 1-1 draw with Norwich on Saturday

This season, Chesterfield and Coventry have been quick on the trigger, sacking John Sheridan and Andy Thorn before the end of August.

'Before, being a manager in England was to be allowed time to build on your concepts,' said Sousa.

'It was different to everywhere else but it has started to be more like the other countries.

'For the club to have success, everybody needs to be clear about the project, what they want to achieve when they consider the profile of a manager.

'If you keep changing it is terrible for the club. It is destabilising and it doesn't make economic sense.

Testing times: Brendan Rodgers has also had a slow start to his Liverpool reign

Testing times: Brendan Rodgers has also had a slow start to his Liverpool reign

'It is not easy to change culture and football philosophy. You need the desire and strength to change. You are asking the fans, the heart of the club, to accept a different kind of football.

'The process of growing will include negative results and if they're not supportive it is really hard.

'It's easier to start the process in League One or League Two, where you can build and motivate yourself and then arrive in the Premier League with stability like Swansea, where the chairman Huw Jenkins understands the vision.

'It has been a bit easier for Swansea working in Wales than it is for Tottenham or Liverpool.'

Visit Paulo's new website at www.paulosousa.co.uk

Andre Villas-Boas unveiled as Tottenham boss

Villas-Boas starts rebuilding work at Tottenham after being handed return from Chelsea woe

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UPDATED:

09:30 GMT, 3 July 2012

Andre Villas-Boas has sealed his return to the Barclays Premier League by taking charge at Tottenham.

Four months after being sacked by Chelsea, the Portuguese will bid to revive his career across London at White Hart Lane.

Villas-Boas flew into the capital on Monday night to finalise the deal and is expected to be officially presented next week.

Back in fashion: Andre Villas-Boas has taken the Spurs reins

Back in fashion: Andre Villas-Boas has taken the Spurs reins

Villas-Boas, 34, has replaced Harry Redknapp at the helm as he bids to establish the club among England's elite.

Redknapp was booted out last month after falling out with chairman Daniel Levy.

Villas-Boas, who has signed a three-year
deal, will also bring trusted aides Jose Mario Rocha and Daniel Sousa
with him to White Hart Lane.

He will now embark on bringing new players to the club, with 8million Gylfi Sigurdsson expected to choose Spurs above Liverpool.

Ajax defender Jan Vertonghen is a long-term target, while Villas-Boas is also keen on Chelsea striker Daniel Sturridge and Brazilian midfielder Oscar.

Down and out Luka Modric (left) looks set to quit Tottenham

Down and out Luka Modric (left) looks set to quit Tottenham

However, one of his most pressing tasks will be convincing Luka Modric to stay. The Croatian has his heart set on a move to Real Madrid.

Spurs sources claim Tottenham will try to negotiate a way for striker Gonzalo Higuain to be part of any deal to take Modric to the Bernabeu.

Villas-Boas is a huge fan of Argentina forward Higuain and tried to sign him during his time as manager of Chelsea last season.

Whether Higuain would consider leaving Madrid for a team not playing in the Champions League remains to be seen.

Andre Villas-Boas to be named Tottenham manager on Tuesday

Villas-Boas wins his Spurs: Former Chelsea boss to get job at the Lane

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UPDATED:

21:35 GMT, 2 July 2012

Tottenham are finally expected to announce Andre Villas-Boas as their new manager on Tuesday.

As Sportsmail revealed last week, Spurs have been putting the finishing touches to a three-year contract for the Portuguese boss to replace Harry Redknapp.

And, after completing the finer details of that deal, Villas-Boas is due to be appointed. It is understood Tottenham’s players have been informed that the former Chelsea manager is their new manager.

This way to The Lane: Andre Villas Boas looks set to be named Spurs manager

This way to The Lane: Andre Villas Boas looks set to be named Spurs manager

Villas-Boas will also bring trusted aides Jose Mario Rocha and Daniel Sousa with him to White Hart Lane.

One of the 34-year-old’s first tasks will be to resolve the future of Luka Modric. The Croatia midfielder is a target for Real Madrid — but there remains a substantial amount of negotiating to be done before the path is cleared for Modric to leave for Spain.

And Spurs sources claim Tottenham will try to negotiate a way for striker Gonzalo Higuain to be part of any deal to take Modric to the Bernabeu.

Hard act to follow: Harry Redknapp left Spurs after finishing fourth

Hard act to follow: Harry Redknapp left Spurs after finishing fourth

Villas-Boas is a huge fan of Argentina forward Higuain and tried to sign him during his time as manager of Chelsea last season.

Whether Higuain would consider leaving Madrid for a team not playing in the Champions League remains to be seen.

Wigan No 2 Graeme Jones favourite for vacant Swansea post after bookies suspend betting

Bookies suspend betting on vacant Swansea post with Wigan No 2 Jones favourite

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UPDATED:

17:29 GMT, 31 May 2012

Wigan No 2 Graeme Jones has emerged as the favourite to replace Brendan Rodgers at Swansea after leading bookmakers suspended betting on the identity of the Welsh club's next manager.

Brighton boss Gus Poyet and Blackpool's Ian Holloway had led the betting after Rodgers informed Swansea of his desire to leave and sign a three-year deal at Liverpool. The two clubs are set to agree a compensation deal.

In the running: Graeme Jones (rear) is favourite to take over at the Liberty Stadium

In the running: Graeme Jones (rear) is favourite to take over at the Liberty Stadium

But a surge of bets on Jones saw the 42-year-old's odds come in as far as 1/10.

Jones worked at Swansea as Roberto Martinez's assistant before joining the Spaniard at the DW Stadium in 2009. He was approached by the Swans to take over from Paolo Sousa prior to their appointment of Rodgers in 2010.

But it is understood that Wigan have yet to receive an approach for Jones.

Paulo Sousa : Four Year Plan shows my job at QPR was impossible

EXCLUSIVE: Sousa backs himself in QPR row after Four Year Plan screening

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UPDATED:

23:58 GMT, 8 March 2012

Paulo Sousa has broken his silence on the controversial QPR documentary, claiming it was ‘impossible’ for him to have been successful under Flavio Briatore.

The two-time European Cup winner has defended his reputation following the fly-on-the-wall film that charted his five-month stay at Loftus Road.

Sousa was undermined repeatedly by both co-owner Briatore and the club’s sporting director Gianni Palladini as he attempted to steer the west London club away from the lower reaches of the Championship.

Short stint: Paulo Sousa was manager of QPR for just five unsettled months

Short stint: Paulo Sousa was manager of QPR for just five unsettled months

In one excerpt Palladini is shown telephoning Briatore to moan about Sousa’s tactics. He then stands outside the dressing-room at half-time, demanding that the manager fields two strikers instead of one.

Matters came to a head when Sousa was sacked for 'divulging highly sensitive information' regarding Dexter Blackstock's transfer to Nottingham Forest – an accusation later rejected by the club’s boss.

Palladini was also later seen referring to Sousa as 'that idiot' before the axe fell.

The former Juventus midfielder, currently managing Videoton in Hungary, said: 'I think people could see for themselves what was going-on. It was as it appeared to be. And that made it impossible for any manager or coach to be successful.

'As a manager, I’ve always said that I’m flexible. That I can adapt to the needs of the players, the staff and the club where I am working. But interference from the boardroom in team matters – both in the dressing-room and at the training ground – meant no-one stood a chance.

'In my time as a player and manager I’ve never known anything like it. Not before nor since.'

Powers the be: Flavio Briatore (top right) was shown to meddle in team matters in the documentary Four Year Plan

Powers the be: Flavio Briatore (top right) was shown to meddle in team matters in the documentary Four Year Plan

Sousa was the first of a succession of
bosses brought in to lead the club to promotion, a feat that was
eventually achieved by Neil Warnock after Briatore and Palladini had
left the club.

He maintained too that the film accurately portrayed what went on with Blackstock’s transfer to the City Ground, adding: 'I don’t need to explain that, people can see for themselves what went on.'

And he claimed that had he been allowed to foster a relationship with board member Amit Bathia that he too would have stood a far better chance.

New dawn: Tony Fernandes is now the man in charge at QPR

New dawn: Tony Fernandes is now the man in charge at QPR

'The players were confused,' he said, 'I'm sure if you speak to them, they will tell you that. The squad enjoyed playing for me, I had a feeling for them, the culture of the club and for the fans who are at the heart of QPR.

'I also had a positive relationship with Amit. He was a person with whom you could talk. I explained to him that the influence of Flavio and Palladini was a negative one. Unfortunately it was too late for me.

'When they stepped back, it was normal again. I remain convinced that I would have achieved things with that club if I had been allowed to operate how I wanted.'

Asked for his feelings on his reign now, Sousa said: 'I appreciated the pair of them giving me the opportunity to manage in England. I cannot forget Flavio’s influence in that.

'Would I shake his hand It depends on the moment. I’m not a person to keep bad things inside me. But I’m also not a man who forgets.'

Chelsea bring Eddie Newton on to help Roberto di Matteo

Chelsea turn to old boy Newton in bid to lift the players after Villas-Boas sacking

Chelsea have moved to appease the players by bringing in club favourite Eddie Newton to work alongside caretaker Roberto di Matteo.

The former Blues midfielder – who played over 200 times for the club – linked up with the squad on Monday morning.

It comes just 24 hours after Andre Villas-Boas was sacked by Roman Abramovich, who is now searching for his eighth manager in nine years since buying the club.

Man in the middle: Roberto di Matteo has taken training at Cobham for the first time since Andre Villas-Boas was sacked by Chelsea on Sunday afternoon

Man in the middle: Roberto di Matteo has taken training at Cobham for the first time since Andre Villas-Boas was sacked by Chelsea on Sunday afternoon

Working together: Di Matteo has already bought in some familiar faces to help out

Working together: Di Matteo has already bought in some familiar faces to help out

Following Villas-Boas out of the door are fitness coach Jose Mario Rocha and head opposition scout Daniel Sousa.

A statement read: 'Chelsea Football
Club is pleased to welcome back Eddie Newton, who will join Roberto Di
Matteo's backroom staff as support until the end of the season.

'Steve Holland will remain as assistant first team coach and Christophe Lollichon as goalkeeping coach.

'Chris Jones, who has been with the club since 2006, will step up to take the role of first team fitness coach.

Whistleblower: AVB was allegedly hounded out of his job by rebel Chelsea players

Whistleblower: AVB was allegedly hounded out of his job by rebel Chelsea players

Whistleblower: AVB was allegedly hounded out of his job by rebel Chelsea players

Whistleblower: AVB was allegedly hounded out of his job by rebel Chelsea players

'Jose Mario Rocha, who previously
held that position, and Daniel Sousa, head opposition scout, have both
left the club. They joined with Andre Villas-Boas last June.'

Newton joined Chelsea as a
13-year-old and eventually made his debut came in 1992. Both Newton and
Di Matteo scored in the 1997 FA Cup final win over Middlesbrough.

The pair have worked together previously at West Bromwich and MK Dons but they must now work hard to win the players over again.

Meanwhile, Ray Wilkins has leapt to the defence of Chelsea's players.

Popular figure: Di Matteo scored a famous FA Cup final goal for Chelsea in 1997

Popular figure: Di Matteo scored a famous FA Cup final goal for Chelsea in 1997

Final call: AVB's last game in charge was a 1-0 loss at West Bromwich Albion

Final call: AVB's last game in charge was a 1-0 loss at West Bromwich Albion

Wilkins, who was controversially fired
as Carlo Ancelotti's assistant in November 2010, said: 'I found the
players an absolute delight to work with. They are a very nice bunch of
guys, they are a hard-working bunch and, coupled with that, they are an
extremely talented bunch. We didn't have a problem.

'I
don't think the players swayed the owner. It appears they are looking
for change at Chelsea and I just feel they went about it too quickly
with AVB.

'To change
what has been such a force – not only in the Premier League but in
European football – overnight, you just can't do that. It takes a
gradual adjustment. Chelsea have gone hammer and tongs at it and they
should have taken their time in switching over.'

Case for the defence: Ray Wilkins claims the Chelsea players were an absolute delight to work with

Case for the defence: Ray Wilkins claims the Chelsea players were an absolute delight to work with

Reports claim Pep Guardiola and Jose
Mourinho are top of Abramovich's wishlist to succeed Villas-Boas, with
Guus Hiddink having recently taken over as manager of Russian side Anzhi
Makhachkala.

Wilkins added on talkSPORT: 'It's
almost as if all options have been exhausted. Hiddink has just gone to
Russia so he is out. I would say Mourinho because I think Mourinho will
leave Real Madrid.

'I think he will win La Liga comfortably and he will think his job's done there. He's still in the Champions League, he's got a chance of winning that.

'He's got a wonderful squad of players there but I think he will leave. He, for me, would be the perfect option.'

Republic of Ireland 1 Czech Republic 1: Simon Cox resuces a draw

Republic of Ireland 1 Czech Republic 1: Trap's food for thought – Czech mates Cox and McClean bring Irish back to life

Giovanni Trapattoni may insist that the door to Poznan and Gdansk is virtually closed, but Ireland’s reserves did their best to keep it ajar.

Surely by the time the Italian names his squad, and the next three months of Premier League action have concluded, it will be swinging wide open for the likes of James McClean.

It was the introduction of the former Derry City midfielder which lifted Aviva Stadium from its slumber and provided hope and heart for Irish supporters who have watched another of their own transform from League of Ireland to the world stage.

Leaving it late: Simon Cox levelled the game for Ireland

Leaving it late: Simon Cox levelled the game for Ireland

MATCH FACTS

Rep of Ireland: Given, O’Shea, O’Dea, St Ledger, Ward, Duff (Green 63), Andrews, Whelan (Hunt 63), McGeady (McClean 79), Keane (Walters 71), Long (Cox 71)

Subs not used: Forde, Foley, Duffy, Coleman, McCarthy, Henderson

Scorer: Cox 87

Czech Republic: Cech, Gebre Selassie (Pilar 66), Limbersky, Sivok, Kadlec, Petrzela (Rajtoral 66), Rezek (Pekhart 88), Stajner (Kolar 59), Plasil, Baros (Lafata 59), Jiracek (Hubschman 46)

Subs not used: Drobny, Rajnoch, Pudil

Scorer: Baros 50

Referee: Manuel de Sousa (Portugal)

But the Sunderland winger and fellow substitutes Stephen Hunt, Paul Green, Simon Cox and Jon Walters also provided the spark to rescue Ireland from a potentially embarrassing defeat as the Euro 2012 finals preparations now start to gather pace.

Ireland manager Trapattoni had insisted this week that he was not only sure of the 23 he will be taking to Poland, but he had started to pencil in the starting XI to face Croatia on June 10 too.
Last night was the much-needed reminder that even he may have got that wrong.

Although McClean’s international introduction was over the top — he gained a warm and heartfelt ovation before he had even touched the ball — it was the highlight of a weary night at the Aviva in front of an expectant audience still coming to terms with Ireland’s return to major championships.

He didn’t play a part directly in Cox’s late, late equaliser but his influence on the night and Ireland’s finish cannot be overlooked, even by Trapattoni.

On the run: Robbie Keane breaks away from the Czech Republic defenders

On the run: Robbie Keane breaks away from the Czech Republic defenders

The Italian’s unlikely trump card was
also Ireland’s hero, Cox securing a draw against a patient Czech side
who had soaked up pressure for most of the night and taken the lead just
after half-time through Milan Baros.

West Brom striker Cox, whose
participation at the Hawthorns has also been limited this season,
skipped on to the determined Keith Andrews’ through ball, slipped it
neatly through Tomas Sivok’s legs and then beat Petr Cech at his near
post from near the byline.

It was a lovely goal, and rightly lifted a delighted home crowd who had fallen silent when Baros put the visitors ahead.

Getting there first: Shay Given gets to the ball ahead of Czech Republic's Jiri Stajner

Getting there first: Shay Given gets to the ball ahead of Czech Republic's Jiri Stajner

A Czech lead at any point seemed highly unlikely after Ireland had made such a bright start to the game.

The Czech goal was under siege from
the first minute when Aiden McGeady’s neat step-over created space
beyond full-back Theodor Gebre Selassie and he clipped a cross into a
packed area that Shane Long nodded harmlessly into the arms of Cech.

And the visitors responded within a
minute themselves through striker Jiri Stajner, who broke into the Irish
penalty area to meet Jaroslav Plasil’s through ball but toe-poked his
effort straight at Shay Given at his near post.

Heads first: Keith Andrews vies for the ball with Czech Jaroslav Plasil

Heads first: Keith Andrews vies for the ball with Czech Jaroslav Plasil

The Aston Villa goalkeeper’s save with his knees prevented a certain goal.

Although Given had one scare when a
clearance clattered into Jan Rezek, forcing the Irish No 1 to scramble
for the loose ball inside edge of his area, and Darren O’Dea made one
crucial block to deny Baros a clear run on goal, Ireland carried the
main threat for most of the first half.

Damien Duff’s first meaningful run on
the right flank, after he had ridden two illegal challenges, should
have presented Keane or Long with a headed chance but the ball somehow
evaded both of the strikers.

Milan's the man: Czech Republic celebrate the goal by former Liverpool man Baros

Milan's the man: Czech Republic celebrate the goal by former Liverpool man Baros

Referee Manuel de Sousa missed the
critical touch of Sivok that altered the flight of the cross and guided
it away from the pair.

But Keane should have put the hosts
in front just three minutes later when a searching ball from Andrews
from deep inside the Irish half flew over the Czech back line and into
the Ireland captain’s path.

Keane’s delightful first touch
certainly helped; unfortunately his finish was less precise and he shot
at Cech’s legs before making a mess of the rebound and allowing Sivok
to clear.

Holding off his man: Keane shields the ball from Tomas Sivok

Holding off his man: Keane shields the ball from Tomas Sivok

Sadly, after John O’Shea had managed
to place a Duff cross over the bar in the 20th minute, neither side
created an opportunity of any note before the half-time break although
Andrews and McGeady had long-range efforts blocked and Baros fired a
weak shot at Given.

The Donegal man was also at full stretch to keep out an awkward bouncing shot from Stajner.
The inevitable Mexican wave started halfway through the first period, although even that petered out after a few minutes.

And the mood was hardly helped by
Ireland’s sluggish start to the second half and the shambolic defending
that led to Baros’s opener.

Flying through the air: Shane Long jumps over Czech Republic's Tomas Sivok

Flying through the air: Shane Long jumps over Czech Republic's Tomas Sivok

How the former Liverpool striker was
left unmarked when Rezek’s reverse pass split the Irish defence, only
O’Shea will really know — the Sunderland defender was AWOL as Baros took
one touch and an eternity before slotting the ball cleverly beyond
Given.

Until the introduction of his
substitutes, Trapattoni’s first XI struggled to break down a resilient
Czech backline. As Keane and Long toiled for openings, Andrews and Duff
squandered opportunities from distance.

Handshake: Stephen Hunt shakes hands with Czech Republic's Petr Cech, the two players were involved in an incident in 2006 which lead the to the Chelsea keeper suffering a head injury

Handshake: Stephen Hunt shakes hands with Czech Republic's Petr Cech, the two players were involved in an incident in 2006 which lead the to the Chelsea keeper suffering a head injury

The best opportunity actually fell to
O’Dea when he arrived in front of Cech to meet another McGeady centre,
only to head straight at the grateful Chelsea keeper.

Green also went reasonably close from
distance while Plasil was in his own personal battle with Given,
shooting at every opportunity to the Irish keeper’s bemusement.

But the game changed with the introduction of those subs. Now will they have changed Trap’s mind in the process