International Friendlies
R. of IrelandRepublic of Ireland2SlovakiaSlovakia2

Republic of Ireland 2-2 Slovakia

By Lyle JacksonBBC Sport
shane long
The Republic's 2-2 draw with Slovakia ended a four-match winning run in home matches

The Republic of Ireland scored two penalties in three minutes as they drew with fellow Euro 2016 qualifiers Slovakia in Dublin.

The Irish were caught out at the back when Miroslav Stoch put Slovakia ahead.

Shane Long converted after a fortunate penalty award against keeper Matus Kozacik and James McClean also netted from the spot to put the hosts 2-1 up.

Slovakia levelled just before the break when Peter Pekarik's cross went in off Ireland defender Paul McShane.

The second penalty looked clear as Liverpool centre-half Martin Skrtel tripped Long in the area.

But the earlier award was harsh as Kozacik appeared to have made contact with the ball and Southampton striker Long at the same time.

Rob Elliot was carried off with a bad-looking knee injury in the first half
Goalkeeper Rob Elliot's hopes of being in the Republic's Euro 2016 squad received a setback

Euro dream may be over for Elliot

Newcastle keeper Rob Elliot injured himself while conceding Slovakia's first goal and had to be replaced in what was his chance to stake a claim for the starting spot at Euro 2016.

The 29-year-old has earned praise for his performances since coming into the Premier League side when Dutchman Tim Krul was injured last October.

Elliot, whose previous game for the Republic was in September 2014, appeared to twist his right knee as he changed direction in an attempt to save Stoch's early goal.

The English-born keeper punched the ground in distress in scenes that did not look good for his hopes of being fit enough to be named in Martin O'Neill's squad of 23 for the championships in France.

He went to hospital for a scan and Rafa Benitez, manager of relegation-threatened Newcastle, will also be anxiously awaiting an update.

Lessons for England and Wales

Slovakia will be the first opponents for Wales and the final fixture for England in Group B at Euro 2016.

Wales boss Chris Coleman made the trip to Dublin to analyse the Slovaks at first hand and he will have noticed that the team ranked 26 in the world can hurt you on the break.

While the Republic may be disappointed at the way they were caught out for the opening goal, it was still finished with cool precision by 26-year-old winger Stoch.

Wales and England should take note, Slovakia are dangerous on the counter attack.

O'Neill's limited attacking options

With the Republic without four strikers because of injury, Long had to begin the game - the only player to retain his starting place from Friday's 1-0 win over Switzerland.

He proved a troublesome presence throughout, winning both penalties with his willing running.

However the former Reading man picked up a slight knock before the break and had an ice pack on his knee after being replaced by left-back Robbie Brady - demonstrating there is limited depth in the striker department.

McClean - usually a left-winger - played as a striker alongside Long, with Wes Hoolahan moving further forward after the striker's half-time exit.

Man of the match - Wes Hoolahan (Republic of Ireland)

Wes Hoolahan of the Republic of Ireland
Norwich City midfielder Hoolahan received warm applause from the crowd of 30,217 when he was replaced by Aiden McGeady

What they said

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill: "The injury to Robbie Elliot was upsetting. It was a cruel blow to himself, his club and indeed ourselves.

"We played some nice attractive football, particularly in the first half.

"There were a lot of substitutions made by both teams and that disrupted things in the second half.

"Overall, there were some good performances. The cohesion we had was a bit surprising given how much we had changed things around for this match."

Republic's James McClean: "I took the second penalty because Shane was a bit sore after taking a knock.

"I had never taken one before so there was a bit of pressure on it.

"We have a big pool of players now and everyone wants to make that 23. I'm no different."

Stats you need to know

  • The Republic of Ireland conceded their first goal at home in 416 minutes.
  • Miroslav Stoch scored his first international goal since October 2014, when he netted against Spain.
  • The Republic have scored four penalties in their last five internationals.
  • Slovakia became the first team to score twice at the Aviva Stadium against Ireland since Turkey in May 2014. They had conceded just three goals in 10 there before this match.


R. of Ireland

Formation 4-4-2

  • 16ElliotSubstituted forRandolphat 16'minutes
  • 15Christie
  • 3McShane
  • 4O'SheaSubstituted forPearceat 45'minutes
  • 17WardSubstituted forHayesat 79'minutes
  • 26O'KaneSubstituted forPilkingtonat 66'minutes
  • 6Whelan
  • 8McCarthy
  • 20HoolahanSubstituted forMcGeadyat 73'minutes
  • 11McCleanBooked at 66mins
  • 9LongSubstituted forBradyat 45'minutes


  • 1Forde
  • 2Coleman
  • 5Keogh
  • 7McGeady
  • 12Pearce
  • 18Meyler
  • 19Brady
  • 22Quinn
  • 23Randolph
  • 24Clark
  • 25Pilkington
  • 27Gleeson
  • 28Hayes
  • 29Duffy
  • 30Judge
  • 31Doherty


Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 23Kozácik
  • 2PekaríkBooked at 63mins
  • 3Skrtel
  • 16Salata
  • 18SventoSubstituted forTesákat 88'minutes
  • 14SaboBooked at 31minsSubstituted forDudaat 64'minutes
  • 6GregusBooked at 70minsSubstituted forHrosovskyat 74'minutes
  • 9SestakSubstituted forWeissat 65'minutes
  • 17Hamsik
  • 10StochSubstituted forMakat 65'minutes
  • 11VittekSubstituted forNemecat 65'minutes


  • 1Mucha
  • 4Durica
  • 5Tesák
  • 7Weiss
  • 8Duda
  • 12Dubravka
  • 13Hrosovsky
  • 15Hubocan
  • 20Mak
  • 21Duris
  • 22Nemec
Ola Hobber Nilsen

Match Stats

Home TeamR. of IrelandAway TeamSlovakia
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Republic of Ireland 2, Slovakia 2.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Republic of Ireland 2, Slovakia 2.

  3. Substitution

    Substitution, Slovakia. Lukás Tesák replaces Dusan Svento.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Anthony Pilkington (Republic of Ireland).

  5. Post update

    Dusan Svento (Slovakia) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  6. Post update

    Glenn Whelan (Republic of Ireland) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  7. Post update

    Foul by Ondrej Duda (Slovakia).

  8. Post update

    Offside, Republic of Ireland. Glenn Whelan tries a through ball, but James McClean is caught offside.

  9. Post update

    Corner, Republic of Ireland. Conceded by Peter Pekarík.

  10. Post update

    Attempt missed. Robert Mak (Slovakia) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the right is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Patrik Hrosovsky.

  11. Post update

    Aiden McGeady (Republic of Ireland) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  12. Post update

    Foul by Patrik Hrosovsky (Slovakia).

  13. Substitution

    Substitution, Republic of Ireland. Jonny Hayes replaces Stephen Ward.

  14. Post update

    Foul by Anthony Pilkington (Republic of Ireland).

  15. Post update

    Martin Skrtel (Slovakia) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  16. Substitution

    Substitution, Slovakia. Patrik Hrosovsky replaces Jan Gregus.

  17. Substitution

    Substitution, Republic of Ireland. Aiden McGeady replaces Wes Hoolahan.

  18. Post update

    Hand ball by James McCarthy (Republic of Ireland).

  19. Post update

    Hand ball by Glenn Whelan (Republic of Ireland).

  20. Post update

    Attempt missed. Robbie Brady (Republic of Ireland) left footed shot from outside the box is too high from a direct free kick.

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Tuesday 29th March 2016

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