Republic of Ireland’s Stephen Kenny Praises Team Effort in Defeat Against Netherlands
Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny commended the “effort and bravery” displayed by his team in their 1-0 loss against the Netherlands in Amsterdam.
Positive Outlook Despite Defeat
The defeat marked the Republic’s sixth loss in eight qualifiers, resulting in their exclusion from the finals. However, Kenny remained optimistic about the team’s performance.
“The players played exceptionally well at times,” Kenny stated in an interview with RTE Sport.
He also acknowledged the strength of the Netherlands, considering them a world-class team and emphasizing that there was little difference between the two sides in both matches.
Kenny praised the defensive efforts and goalkeeping skills of Gavin Bazunu, who made several crucial saves throughout the game.
Highlighting the historical difficulty of winning away games against tier one teams, Kenny acknowledged the challenges faced by the Republic of Ireland.
Missed Opportunities and Defensive Errors
The Republic struggled to create significant scoring opportunities, with their first real test for Netherlands goalkeeper Bart Verbruggen coming when substitute Adam Idah had a goal disallowed for offside in the second half.
Kenny expressed disappointment in the series of errors that led to Weghorst’s decisive goal, contributing to the team’s 18th defeat during his tenure as manager.
“We want to eliminate these mistakes. We were determined to win, but it’s not easy against a strong team like the Netherlands,” Kenny explained.
He acknowledged the rebuilding process the team has undergone in recent years, recognizing the existing challenges within Irish football.
Uncertain Future for Stephen Kenny
With his contract set to expire at the end of the European qualifying campaign, Tuesday night’s friendly against New Zealand is speculated to be Kenny’s final match in charge.
When asked about his future, Kenny stated, “I don’t have control over that.” He emphasized his appreciation for the players’ efforts and their level of skill and bravery, acknowledging that the Netherlands outperformed the Republic of Ireland.
Despite the defeat, Kenny’s focus remains on the team’s progress and addressing the deficits within Irish football.