Sing Then You’re Winning?

So Ireland were outclassed and outplayed by a superior Spanish team, who are after all reigning European Champions and World Cup Winners.

No-one seriously can have expected a different outcome can they? The performance and result were disappointing, particularly given what we’ve seen before from Trapp’s team with its defensive organisation and ability to frustrate.

In the aftermath of last night’s game, many commentators have commented on the tremendous support for the Boys in Green coming from the stands. The support was unconditional, the chanting designed to get the faintest of hearts pumping and the rendition of the Fields of Athenry that reverberated round Gdansk, well it was a thing of wonder.

Or was it? Was this, as John Delaney of the FAI described it, the ‘Abiding Memory’ of Poland? Or should we be looking for something more. Maybe something on the pitch? Are we as Irish people starting to become weary of this stereotype that we’ll go along for the sing song and the party and enjoy ourselves irrespective of the result.

Or are we accepting of results, win lose or draw so long as we can have a good time, sinking a few pints and having the craic with the locals and the other fans. Harmless and roaming free with the wife’s permission and the Credit Union’s cash?

There is no denying the gulf in class between Trappatoni’s Ireland and the likes of Spain. The personnel just aren’t there to go toe to toe with the likes of the better teams. Really once qualified, are we just going along for the craic? Are our expectations too high?

And as one academic commented last night, are we also content to leave as our abiding legacy at this tournament a lamentable dirge about the biggest single catastrophe to befall the Irish people.

To hell with Trevelyn and his bloody corn.