|Ireland's Robbie Keane celebrates after scoring against Macedonia during the Euro 2012 qualifier soccer match at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin March 26, 2011. REUTERS/Cathal McNaughton |
Giovanni Trapattoni’s Ireland are on their way to New York for a re-enactment of their 1994 World Cup showdown with Italy.
Trap’s team have lined up a June 11 friendly against Italy at the new Meadowlands Stadium, built on the site where Ray Houghton famously stuck the ball in the Italian net. The FAI have yet to confirm the fixture, and another friendly against Mexico in Washington or Philadelphia three days earlier, but the Italian press have already said the game is on.
The Irish squad will depart for America after their crucial June 4 European Championship qualifier in Macedonia.
Several senior players are likely to be rested for the U.S. trip, with Trapattoni anxious to spend time with players on the fringes of his squad.
Boston is also in the frame for the opening game of the American tour, possibly against Mexico.
“Against Italy, Mexico, or another country, it would be very important for this young team,” said Trapattoni.
“They can achieve more experience and against a famous team like Italy, I am confident it would be a good experience for them. It will help the players to understand.”Irish Lose to Uruguay
By Cathal Dervan
Giovanni Trapattoni’s experimental Ireland staged a brave second half fight back, but it just wasn’t enough against World Cup semi-finalists Uruguay, who defeated the Irish by a score of 3-2 in Dublin on Tuesday night.
Diego Forlan’s free-kick eventually fell to Lugano for the opening goal on 13 minutes, but the impressive Shane Long headed home a Lawrence cross for the equalizer two minutes later.
Cavani, in the 22nd minute, and Hernandez, in the 33rd, fired the visitors into a 3-1 interval lead.
Ireland did get back within striking distance when the industrious Keith Fahey scored from the penalty spot two minutes into the second half.
But Andy Keogh wasted two glorious opportunities as Ireland followed Saturday’s competitive win over Macedonia with a friendly defeat.