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ESPN FC's Euro 2016 awards

Euro 2016
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United States' loss to Republic of Ireland proves there's a lot of work to do

ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno says the days of players having a divine right to play for the United States are over after their World Cup qualification failure.

The United States got a bit of a reality check in its 2-1 defeat to the Republic of Ireland. That isn't necessarily a bad thing.

Granted, there were reasons to be disappointed at the result. The U.S. actually took the lead in first-half stoppage time on a real poacher's goal from Bobby Wood. That the U.S. failed to build on that advantage, or at least manage the scoreline better is cause for a furrowed brow or two.

But in many ways, this match served its purpose, if for no other reason that to temper...

Young U.S. side shows its inexperience, takes a step back in defeat to Ireland

ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno says the days of players having a divine right to play for the United States are over after their World Cup qualification failure.

Ireland defeated the U.S. men's national team 2-1 at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin in an international friendly on Saturday.

Bobby Wood put the U.S. ahead just before halftime with an opportunistic goal, but Graeme Burke notched the equalizer for the home side in the 57th minute, touching home Darragh Lenihan's strike. Substitute Alan Judge then scored the game winner in the 90th minute to give the home side a dramatic victory.

Here are three thoughts from the match.

1. U.S. fades in second...

Ireland frustrate Denmark, Christian Eriksen in playoff first leg 0-0 draw

COPENHAGEN, Denmark -- Three points from Saturday's 0-0 playoff first leg between Denmark and the Republic of Ireland...

1. Ireland frustrate Danes to gain playoff advantage

Some games are never going to find themselves billed as "classics," and Saturday's clash between Denmark and the Republic of Ireland certainly lived down to expectations in Copenhagen. In the end, the dour 0-0 draw gives the Irish the edge in this World Cup play-off going into next Tuesday's return fixture in Dublin.

Having...

Kevin Kilbane on Thierry Henry's handball, Ireland's World Cup playoff

The sense of injustice still burns, eight years on, for Kevin Kilbane. The former Republic of Ireland midfielder insists he has moved on from the moment that Thierry Henry ended his, and his country's, hopes of a place at the 2010 World Cup with his infamous handball in Paris, but the bitterness remains.

"Football moves on and you have to move on," Kilbane told ESPN FC. "You go back to your club, get on with life and move on, but when you look back and reflect on your career, yeah, there is a sense...

John Brewin profile picture  By John Brewin

Ireland's dogged, collective approach makes them team to fear in WC playoff

Martin O'Neill has helped create a strong, determined Ireland squad that fights hard for one another.

There is a terrible beauty about Martin O'Neill's Ireland team. Though frequently terrible to watch, they have proved capable of pulling off beautiful results.

Monday's 1-0 victory in Cardiff "put a sword through the heart of the Welsh dragon," in the choice words of RTE commentator George Hamilton, and took Ireland into the World Cup playoffs. As Wales fans trudged tearfully away into the night, O'Neill and assistant Roy Keane took a leisurely, cheerful walk onto the Cardiff City Stadium pitch,...

John Brewin profile picture  By John Brewin

Ireland beat Gareth Bale-less Wales, book World Cup playoff spot

Republic of Ireland players celebrate their lone goal against Wales.
Ireland grabbed a victory in Cardiff to keep their World Cup dreams alive at Wales' expense.

CARDIFF, Wales -- Three points from a dramatic game in Group D as Ireland eliminated Wales from playoff contention in World Cup qualifying.

1. McClean cracker puts Ireland in the playoffs

Wales' wait goes on. They have not played at a World Cup finals since 1958 and thanks to Monday's 1-0 defeat, Ireland will take their place in the playoffs instead, their hopes of making Russia their first finals since 2002 still very much alive. James McClean's 57th minute goal, a singular moment of quality...