Republic of Ireland 1 - 1 Azerbaijan
REPORT | Ireland 1-1 Azerbaijan - Duffy rescues point
In the first ever meeting between the two sides, Duffy's late header rescued a point for the home side after Emin Makhmudov's incredible strike on the stroke of half-time had put the away side into a shock lead.
In the opening ten minutes, Ireland could have been at least two goals ahead through Aaron Connolly and Matt Doherty after a pulsating start in front of 21,287 supporters. Doherty went close with a header on five minutes, after a beautiful ball from Cullen and just 60 seconds later, Idah did brilliantly to run down the end line to square to Connolly, whose shot was blocked.
Captain Coleman’s effort went just wide on ten minutes too, as the Irish supporters urged their side to find the opener. Ireland continued to create and had two good chances halfway through the first-half.
Molumby’s effort from the edge of the box went close, before Connolly's brilliant cross found Idah who headed just wide of the right-hand post. However, in the final moments of the first-half, Emin Makhmudov found himself 30 yards from goal, and under no pressure, he found the perfect strike into the top right-hand corner.
Ireland enjoyed prolonged spells of possession in the second 45 but were left frustrated time and time again as Azerbaijan sat back with every player behind the ball. Parrott’s effort from the edge of the area was well saved before Idah’s glancing header went just wide.
Robinson and Hourihane were introduced and the introductions helped Ireland's cause. Duffy went close, heading just over from Robinson’s brilliant cross as Ireland adopted a more direct approach in the final quarter of the game.
Robinson was agonisingly to finding an equaliser with 10 minutes left but sent his effort wide from the six-yard box, but soon after, that equaliser finally came. Cullen’s deep cross found Duffy, who had stayed up from a corner, who headed home much to the delight of the Green Army behind the goal, for a long-awaited equaliser.
Five minutes of added time were announced, and Ireland piled forward looking for the winner. Robinson went close again but his effort was well saved, and it proved to be the last action of the evening, as Ireland secure their first point of the campaign
Republic of Ireland: Gavin Bazunu; Matt Doherty (James Collins 79), Seamus Coleman (C), Shane Duffy, John Egan, James McClean; Jayson Molumby (Conor Hourihane 62), Josh Cullen (Alan Browne 87); Troy Parrott (Callum Robinson 62), Adam Idah, Aaron Connolly (Daryl Horgan 46).
Subs not used: Caoimhin Kelleher, James Talbot, Ryan Manning, Andrew Omobamidele, Jeff Hendrick, Jamie McGrath, Ronan Curtis.
Booked: Jayson Molumby (56), Alan Browne (90)
Azerbaijan: Shakhrudin Mahammadaliyev; Gara Garayev, Maksim Medvedev © (Abbas Huseynov 70), Hojjat Haghverdi, Elvin Badalov, Anton Krivotsyuk, Emin Makhmudov, Tural Bayramov, Namik Alaskarov (Rustam Akhmedzade 70), Mahir Emreli (Ramil Sheydayev 79), Filip Ozobic (Anatolii Nuriyev 80).
Subs not used: Aydin Bayramov, Mekhti Dzhenetov; Rahim Sadikhov, Azer Salahli, Vugar Mustafayev, Ismayil Ibrahhimli, Bahlul Mustafazade, Tamkin Khalilzade.
Booked: Anton Krivotsyuk (67)
Referee: Jerome Brisard (France)
Carlsberg Man of the Match: Adam Idah
PREVIEW | Republic of Ireland v Azerbaijan
Ireland returned to Dublin following the 2-1 defeat to Portugal as Cristiano Ronaldo scored a heart-breaking late brace to seal the win for the home side.
Stephen Kenny's side will look to seal their first win of the campaign against Azerbaijan ahead of the match against Serbia on Tuesday, September 7.
Fixture: Republic of Ireland v Azerbaijan
Date: Saturday, September 4
Competition: FIFA 2022 World Cup Qualifiers - European Qualifiers
TV: RTE & Sky Sports
A limited number of tickets for the Azerbaijan and Serbia games are available here.
Referee: Jérôme Brisard (FRA)
Assistant 1: Benjamin Pages (FRA)
Assistant 2: Erwan Christophe Finjean (FRA)
Fourth Official: Mikaël Lesage (FRA)
Video Assistant Referee: Stéphanie Frappart (FRA)
Assistant Video Assistant Referee: Mikael Berchebru (FRA)
Callum Robinson, Alan Browne and Liam Scales trained with the squad at the Aviva Stadium earlier today (Friday, September 3) and are in contention. Defenders Dara O'Shea and Nathan Collins have been withdrawn from the squad through injury.
What he said - Ireland manager Stephen Kenny
“It will be a proud moment for the players with the fans back,” said Stephen Kenny.
“We have handed many young players their debuts recently but in empty stadia and it is not comparable. They will have their families and their friends there tomorrow night and those who have been on their football journey with them. They will be very proud.
"It will be a different challenge from Portugal but once we can't take lightly."
Watch the full press conference with Stephen Kenny here...
What he said - Ireland defender Matt Doherty
“I am a player who needs the crowd back. It is a game changer for me when there are fans there and it helps bring us to a different level.
"The home fans will make a big difference for us against Azerbaijan and Serbia and will be a real positive for us.
"We've got to build on the performance in midweek and get a result which we need to kick-start the campaign really.
"We want to get going and the lads are eager to get points on the board so we'll be going all out for the win."
Watch the full press conference with Matt Doherty here...
Republic of Ireland Squad
Goalkeepers: Caoimhin Kelleher (Liverpool), Gavin Bazunu (Portsmouth, on loan from Manchester City), James Talbot (Bohemians)
Defenders: Seamus Coleman (Everton), Matt Doherty (Tottenham Hotspur), Shane Duffy (Brighton and Hove Albion), John Egan (Sheffield United), Ryan Manning (Swansea City), James McClean (Wigan Athletic), Andrew Omobamidele (Norwich City), Liam Scales (Celtic)
Midfielders: Josh Cullen (Anderlecht), Jeff Hendrick (Newcastle United), Conor Hourihane (Aston Villa), Harry Arter (Nottingham Forest), Jamie McGrath (St. Mirren), Jayson Molumby (Brighton and Hove Albion), Alan Browne (Preston North End)
Attackers: Aaron Connolly (Brighton and Hove Albion), James Collins (Cardiff City), Daryl Horgan (Wycombe Wanderers), Adam Idah (Norwich City), Troy Parrott (MK Dons, on loan from Tottenham Hotspur), Ronan Curtis (Portsmouth), Callum Robinson (West Bromwich Albion)
Republic of Ireland
- 16 Caoimhin Kelleher (G)
- 23 James Talbot (G)
- 3 Ryan Manning
- 8 Conor Hourihane
- 12 Callum Robinson
- 13 Jeff Hendrick
- 14 Alan Browne
- 15 Daryl Horgan
- 18 Jamie McGrath
- 19 James Collins
- 20 Ronan Curtis
- 22 Andrew Omobamidele
- 12 Mekhti Dzhenetov (G)
- 23 Aydin Bayramov (G)
- 3 Azer Salahli
- 6 Vugar Mustafayev
- 9 Rustam Akmedzade
- 11 Ramil Sheydaev
- 13 Abbas Hüseynov
- 15 Bahlul Mustafazade
- 16 Anatolii Nuriiev
- 19 Tamkin Khalilzade
- 21 Ismayil İbrahimli
- 22 Rahim Sadikhov
Giovanni de Biasi
- Referee Jérôme Brisard
- Assistant Referees Benjamin Pages
- UEFA Delegate Jenni Kennedy
- Assistant Referee Two Erwan Finjean
- Fourth Official Mikaël Lesage
- Video Assistant Referee Stéphanie Frappart
- Assistant Video Assistant Referee Mikael Berchebru
- Referee Observer Robert Malek
- Republic of Ireland
Shots on Target
Shots off Target
Republic of Ireland
5Shots on Goal4
Minute by Minute Commentary