Ireland v Cyprus is a crucial game for manager Trappatoni
Three points from the game against the Cypriots could virtually guarantee second place
“We have to play our own game and forget about everyone else. If we win in Cyprus –- then the possibility is there for us to overtake Italy when we come face to face in Croke Park,” said Trapattoni.
“Plus Italy also have to play Bulgaria again and they have no guarantee of winning that so I am not giving up on anything.”
CELTIC’S Irish winger Aiden McGeady is the latest player involved in a diving row after he was sent off at Hibs on Sunday, but manager Tony Mowbray has claimed his player is no cheat.
McGeady was in the wars just days after Arsenal striker Eduardo conned a penalty against Celtic in the Champions League and now faced disciplinary action from UEFA.
McGeady was handed a second yellow card for diving and then a red when he went down under a challenge from defender Paul Hanlon as a goal from Georgios Samaras secured a 1-0 win at Easter Road.
Celtic boss Mowbray was unhappy with the McGeady decision. “If the Eduardo situation had not been blown up so big nationally, 99 times out of 100, maybe even 100 out of 100, it would never have been a yellow card,” he said.
“I think the referee has been influenced by the diving situation. I don’t need to look at it again, it happened right in front of me.
“It was unfortunate for Aiden. It was a poor decision and we are in all in disbelief. You have to put it into the context of the boy traveling 50 yards before the incident. He went to ground because he was knackered.
“Is it a dive? Never in a million years. A dive is when you try to influence the referee, you throw your arms up and so on.”
Hanlon also defended McGeady but insisted he made no contact with the Hoops player.
Celtic crashed out of the Champions League when they went down to Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium last week –- and Gunners striker Eduardo went down like a lead balloon to earn a controversial penalty.
UEFA are taking disciplinary action against Eduardo after he won a first half penalty after a collision with Celtic ‘keeper Artur Boruc.
TV replays clearly showed Boruc made no contact at all with the Croatian striker, but Mowbray refused to get involved in the controversy after his side’s Euro exit.
The Celtic boss said, “I haven’t given it a second thought. I have seen the incident again but it doesn’t matter, we are out of the Champions League.”
The Europa League is the consolation prize for Celtic when they will face Hamburg, Hapoel Tel Aviv and Rapid Vienna in the group stages.
“When I said after the game against Arsenal that none of the teams in the Europa League would be as strong as them, that was a fair comment,” said Mowbray.
“We go into it hoping we can do well but we are very respectful of the teams that are in there.”
Celtic’s Irish defender Darren O’Dea has signed a new three-year contract with the Glasgow club but has also moved to Reading on loan until January.
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