Republic of Ireland 1 Germany 6
Germany hit Ireland for six at the Aviva Stadium to firmly take control of FIFA World Cup Group C and set a course which points to the prospect of early qualification for Brazil by Joachim Low's side
Two first half goals from Marco Reus and four in the second half from Mesut Ozil, Miroslav Klose and Toni Kroos (2) saw Germany inflict Ireland's heaviest ever home defeat as they bettered the 5-0 scoreline that Spain won by way back in 1931.
Manager Giovanni Trapattoni now faces the tough job of lifting his side ahead of the trip to the Faroe Island's on Tuesday where Ireland need three points to keep in the hunt for second place in the group.
The Germans came to Dublin having never lost a World Cup qualifier away from home and although Ireland started well their early pressure yielded noting of note in terms of chances. It took German about 15 minutes to settle into their usual passing game and once they did they enjoyed long periods of possession.
Ireland were quite content to keep their shape, suck the Germans in and try to hit them on the counter-attack and on two occasions balls over the top almost set Jonathon Walters away. The first time, after 17 minutes, he was denied by a timely intervention from Per Mertesacker and on the second occasion, four minutes later, it took a headed clearance from goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, ten metres outside his box, to foil the Irish striker.
Marco Reus was booked in the 30th minute for diving after a challenge from John O'Shea but he was all smiles two minutes later when he scored the game's opening goal. Left back Marcel Schmeltzer ran in from the flank to take a pass on his chest and the ball fell kindly for Reus who glided past a despairing lunge from Stephen Ward before driving the ball past Westwood fand off the underside of the crossbar.
The Germans continued to dominate after that and in one five minute period actually had 98 per cent of the possession. But the second goal in the 35th minute actually came from lightning counter-attack after a rare Irish attack had broken down. A slick diagonal passing movement started near his own corner flag by Reus ended with right-back Jerome Boateng whipping the ball crossfield to Reus charging down the left and he cracked a right-footed shot from the edge of the box past the despairing dive of Westwood and into the corner of the net.
Ireland brought on Shane Long for Keith Fahey after 51 minutes as they went about chasing the game but that task assumed Everest proportions over the next ten minutes as the Germans put the game firmly beyond Ireland's reach with three more goals.
In the 55th minute Darren O'Dea brought Klose down inside the box and Mesut Ozil sent Westwood the wrong way from the resultant penalty. Then Schweinsteiger split the Irish defence with a through that Klose latched onto and rounded Westwood before steering the ball home from an acute angle. Finally, in the 61st minute, a decent defensive header from O'Shea was met on the volley by substitute Toni Kroos and his left footed shot from 25metres screamed past Weswood.
The Germans eased off after that allowing Ireland to get some possession but chances were few and far between with a speculative long range effort from Keith Andrews the most noteworthy.
But the Germans were always dangerous and in the 83rd minute substitute Kroos grabbed his second when he picked the ball up 30 metres out and drifted past James McCarthy before firing another bullet past Westwood from 20 metres.
Ireland eventually got the goal their hard work deserved when substitute Andy Keogh forced a corner when Neuer turned his close range shot around the post for a corner and then charged in unmarked to head home the flag-kick from six metres,.
It was an impressive display from Germany against an Ireland side that had been ravaged in the build up by injuries to key players and the battle now begins for second place.
Earlier in Group C, Sweden came from a goal down to beat Faroe Islands 2-1 while Kazakhstan held Austria to a scoreless draw in Astana. Ireland now travel to the Faroe Islands on Tuesday while Germany face Sweden.
Republic of Ireland: Westwood; Coleman, O'Shea, O'Dea, Ward; Andrews, Fahey (Long 51), McCarthy; McGeady (Keogh 69), Walters, Cox (Brady 83).
Germany: Neuer; Boateng, Mertesacker, Badstuber, Schmelzer; Muller, Schweinsteiger, Khedira (Kroos 46), Ozil, Reus (Podolski 66); Klose (Schurrie 72).
Referee: Nicola Rizzoli (Italy).
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