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Giovanni Trapattoni

Trapattoni already looking to make the Italian connection in Poland

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Giovanni Trapattoni

Ireland boss Giovanni Trapattoni won’t rule out the ultimate European Championship revenge when his team face Italy in Poznan next June.

Trapattoni is still annoyed at the fate that befell Italy in his last appearance at the Euro finals as a manager in Portugal back in 2004.

The 72-year-old bristles as he recalls how Denmark and Sweden secured the 2-2 draw they needed in their final group game to send the Italians home early.

The Irish boss has even said that he is still awaiting an official UEFA investigation into how the Scandic neighbours ended up with the one result they needed to hurt his Italian side.

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The boot could be on the other foot in Poznan on June 18th when Trapattoni’s Ireland face his homeland for the third time in his reign.

“I have been here before, you remember what happened with Sweden and Denmark?” asked Trapattoni when the Euro 2004 scenario was put to him after Friday night’s draw in Kiev.

“Italy went out that night and I asked UEFA why, who the score in the other game was the score they needed. I was promised an enquiry and I am still waiting.

“Maybe it could happen again and this time I will be on the right side of it! We will see what might happen.”

UEFA have again dismissed Trapattoni’s claims that there is a need to investigate that 2004 draw and the Italian will have his work cut out keeping Group C alive for Ireland before the final game in Poznan.

The opening fixture against Croatia on June 10th promises to be the deciding moment of the pool stages as far as Trap’s team is concerned with world Spain to follow four days later.

“I promise the Ireland supporters that we will do our very best for them – we will win for them,” added Trapattoni.

“The first game is always very important in a group and it is really important now with Spain and Italy to follow.

“We will want to do well against Croatia. They are a strong team as we saw in Dublin last August but our spirit is good and we will be ready for them.

“We will prepare well mentally and physically and try to get off to a good start because Spain are next and they are a great side, they deserve to be the world champions.

“It will not be easy in any of the games but I will remind my players that we can play. We will have the mentality and we will have the belief in Poland.”

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