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10th Oct 2015

We asked you to pick your Ireland starting XI to play Poland and here’s what you came up with

What will Martin do?

Conan Doherty

It all comes down to this.

The Republic of Ireland are 90 minutes from automatic qualification for Euro 2016, with a play-off place already guaranteed.

At the start of September it looked like we would be on the outside looking in next summer, but a win tomorrow in Warsaw (or a 2-2 scoreline or higher score draw) will see us straight through to France.

We asked you to tell us who Martin O’Neill should select against Poland and, unsurprisingly most of you kept faith with the nucleus of the team who finished the incredible 1-0 win over Germany on Thursday.

Which means no place for captain and record goal-scorer Robbie Keane.

Shane Long, who started on the bench against the World Cup champions, is a universal selection. With a few readers showing an admirable amount of faith in the Southampton man.

One of you has found a reason to drop Jonathan Walters. Clearly you did not read this.

Most of you found a place for the fit-again Seamus Coleman.



Even if it was in midfield. That could be interesting.

But not everyone, with one reader sticking with the same back four that started against Germany. That can’t happen now, unfortunately Stephen Ward has not travelled to Poland.

You’re in the minority, but a couple of you would bring back Glenn Whelan. Not everyone agrees.

There was not a lot of love for the other man returning from suspension, namely James McClean.

While there is always love for the old reliables. Only one Gary Breen? Seems dodgy.

And here’s our XI…

SportsJOE team

Super Darren Randolph gets his first competitive start after his debut against the world champions.

Robbie Brady goes back to left back to cover for the injured Stephen Ward but, rather than bringing Glenn Whelan back into midfield, we’ve opted for James McClean to take the midfield slot that Brady occupied against Germany.

Seamus Coleman of course comes into the right full back position again.

You might be worried that McClean’s inclusion leaves it a little lob-sided on the right hand side. Don’t worry, Jon Walters has got this.

And we’ve somewhat controversially opted for Daryl Murphy up top for no other reason but we want the same effect from Shane Long that he offered the last day – and when he scored an injury time equaliser against Poland in March.

Brought to you by SPAR, a proud partner of the FAI.


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