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28.09.2008 at 18:00 Young Boys Diekirch - Diekirch Attendance:
Andorra 1 - 5 Rep of Ireland
Referee: Gediminas Mazeika (LTU) EC Qualifying Round-match

Xavier Llanes 42 mins; Jeff Hendrick (37)
Jeff Hendrick (58)
Daniel Joyce (62)
Jeff Hendrick (pen.) (64)
Ryan Connolly (72)
Opening squads
Daniel Vinardell Vidal
Jonathan Ferreira
Cristopher Pousa Braganza
Joel Ferreros Soucasse
Aderito Charrua Magalhaes
Nuno Miguel Da Silva Pereira
Xavier Vieira
Xavier Llanes
Albert Acosta
Luigi San Nicolas Schellens
Alejandro Santos
Ciaran Gallagher
Anthony O'Connor
Daniel Joyce
Eoghan Osbourne
Sean Stewart
Eoin Wearen
Stephen Mc Donnell
Bryan Murphy
Sean Skelly
Jeff Hendrick
Michael Rafter
Joan Aleix
Marc Rebes Ruiz
Sebastia Bertran
Eric Lopes Rafegas
Cristian Da Cunha Costa
Marc Ferrer Nazzaro
Enric Triquell Martinez
Josh Byrne
John Egan
Daniel Fitzsimons
Jordan Philpott
David O'Leary
Ryan Connolly
Patrick Mc Eleney
Xavier Llanes (out)
Sebastia Bertran (in)68 mins;
Joel Ferreros Soucasse (out)
Enric Triquell Martinez (in)72 mins;
Luigi San Nicolas Schellens (out)
Eric Lopes Rafegas (in)78 mins;
Patrick Mc Eleney -> Bryan Murphy (56)
David O'Leary -> Stephen Mc Donnell (65)
Ryan Connolly -> Michael Rafter (67)
Yellow cards
Albert Acosta 24 mins;
Aderito Charrua Magalhaes 54 mins;
Alejandro Santos 65 mins;
Joel Ferreros Soucasse 68 mins;
Stephen Mc Donnell (34)
Red cards
None None.
Match report
UEFA Championship qualifying - First Phase Group 5:

Republic of Ireland 5-1 Andorra
Hendrick 37, 59, 66 (pen) Llanas 41
Joyce 63
Connolly 72

The Republic of Ireland produced a convincing display in their second UEFA qualifying first phase group match tonight (Sunday) to brush aside Andorra 5-1 in Diekirch, Luxembourg.

Jeff Hendrick scored a hat-trick in the win, along with goals by captain Danny Joyce and substitute Ryan Connolly, to put Ireland in a commanding position to progress to the Elite phase with one game remaining against Greece on Wednesday .

Following the 1-1 draw against Luxembourg on Friday, Ireland met another team who defended deep and pinned their hopes of hitting the Irish on the break.

Andorra did manage to cancel out Henrick’s opener a minute into the second half but Ireland gradually wore down a resolute defence to score four times during a 13 minute clinical spell.

The result, coupled with the scoreless draw between Greece and Luxembourg in the other group game played today (Sunday), means that three nations are vying for the two automatic qualifying spots from the group heading into the final series of matches.

The Republic of Ireland and Greece and level at the top of the group on four points, followed by host nation Luxembourg with two points while Andorra have yet to get off the mark.

It was one-way traffic in the first half with Ireland dominating possession and creating numerous scoring chances.

Sean Skelly fired a shot wide with less than two minutes elapsed and Danny Joyce came within inches of scoring when his effort from distance cleared the crossbar on 25 minutes.

Bryan Murphy, on his debut at this level, forced a good save from the Andorra goalkeeper with a header a minute later before Hendrick (pictured left) broke the deadlock after 37 minutes.

The Derby County midfielder was in the right place to meet a half-clearance by the opposition defence and his volley was delivered sweetly into the net.

Andorra stunned Ireland by equalising within a minute of the second half starting through Llanas but the Irish remained patient in their pursuit of a second goal.

Hendrick was at the centre of Ireland’s best chances and his determination was rewarded with a second lead goal on 59 minutes.

Stephen McDonnell’s free-kick was expertly crossed into the penalty area and Hendrick got a connection with his header to loop the ball over the head of the Andorran stopper.

It was 3-1 three minutes later when Danny Joyce found room inside the box to collect a Hendrick pass and slot the ball home.

The goals continued to flow and Hendrick grabbed his hat-trick on 66 minutes with a penalty after substitute Pat McEleney was fouled inside the area.

Ryan Connolly put the gloss on a blistering spell of attacking play with the fifth goal following his raiding run that saw him evade two defenders, round the goalkeeper and tap into the net.

Republic of Ireland manager Sean McCaffrey was delighted with the outcome. He said: “I was extremely happy with how we played. The lads retained the ball well and moved it quickly to get in behind their defence.

“Andorra were very physical in their approach and hard to break down due to the numbers they defended in.

“Even after they got it back to 1-1, I was confident that we would create plenty more chances. We had to be patient and disciplined in our build-up and that was reflected by the four goals that we scored in the end.”

As a mark of respect following the death of Noel O'Reilly on Friday, a minute's silence was observed before the game and the players wore black armbands.

Republic of Ireland:
1. Ciaran Gallagher - Finn Harps
12. Sean Skelly - Belvedere
2. Danny Joyce - Reading
4. Anthony O’Connor - Blackburn Rovers
3. Eoghan Osbourne – Drogheda United
7. Sean Stewart – St. Kevin’s Boys
6. Stephen McDonnell – Celtic (replaced by David O’Leary - 67 min)
8. Jeff Hendrick - Derby County
13. Eoin Wearen – West Ham
10. Michael Rafter - Colchester United (replaced by Ryan Connolly - 68 mins)
15. Bryan Murphy – Listowel Celtic (replaced by Patrick McEleney - 57 mins)
Subs not used:
16. Josh Byrne - Waterford Bohs
17. Jordan Philpott – Blackburn Rovers
5. John Egan - Greenwood
18. Danny Fitzsimons – Millwall

Referee: Gediminas Mazeika (Lithuania)

UEFA Championship qualifying - First Phase Group 5
Fixtures and Results:

Friday, September 26
Republic of Ireland 1-1 Luxembourg
Greece 4-0 Andorra

Sunday, September 28
Andorra 1-5 Republic of Ireland
Greece 0-0 Luxembourg

Wednesday, October 1
Republic of Ireland v Greece (7pm)
Luxembourg v Andorra (7pm).
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