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Republic of Ireland Football Team Fixtures & Results for 2012
The Irish made their first appearance at a major football final competition in ten years when they took to the pitch against Croatia in June 2012 at the Euro Finals.
Unfortunately for the Irish they experienced defeat for the first time in their opening match at a major football tournament. Giovanni Trapattoni's men suffered a 3-1 defeat and this was followed up by a 4-0 drubbing by World Champions Spain, and a 2-0 defeat by the Italians.
It was the first time that an Irish team had failed to win even a single point at a major championship finals. Nine goals conceded and just one scored was a fair reflection of the performances by Ireland at the Euro 2012 Finals. It was particularly disappointing as Ireland's build up to Euro 2012 had been quite positive giving the travelling fans, and those back in Ireland, some hope of qualifying for the knockout stages of the competition.
One high point for the Irish was the heart-warming reaction of the Irish fans in the latter stages of the Ireland / Spain match. With about ten minutes to go, and Ireland facing certain elimination from Euro 2012, the Irish fans in the stadium in Gdansk sang an emotional and extended version of the 'Fields of Athenry'.
The passion and emotion of the moment was picked up by some Spanish fans who did their best to join in with the Irish and some foreign TV commentators temporarily suspended their commentary so that their viewers could appreciate the moment. The Irish may have lost on the football pitch but they surpassed themselves in the stands.
Republic of Ireland Match Fixtures & Results for 2012
Scores in parentheses are half-time scores
(1) FIFA did not recognise this match as a full international due to the presence of assistant referee David Vang Andersen on the touchline. He was not among the list of FIFA referees at the time and therefore FIFA did not recognise the game in terms of their ranking coefficients. The decision to award caps was left to the Irish and Hungarian football associations. The FAI decided to award full caps for the match and this was particularly relevant to Damien Duff who, not only captained the Irish team for the match but also, earned his 100th Irish international cap. It was not the first time the FAI has taken such a decision, having awarded caps to those players who played in the abandoned friendly against England in 1995 when the English FA chose not to do the same.