Trap is preparing his first change of the evening and it looks like it’s going to be… Stephen Hunt. Hold your fire, McClean fans. 9:10PM It’s actually a double substitution for Ireland. Whelan and Duff go off, Green and Hunt come on. And just in case anyone needed reminding, the Sky cameras cut to a shot of James McClean and Shane Duffy chatting away on the bench.
Of course, if you’re watching this on Sky Sports as well as checking in with the liveblog, you’ll have noticed that they’ve already had a rather lengthy interview with Mr McClean. We’re expecting him to make an appearance at some stage in the second half — hopefully he gets a run for more than the last 10 minutes. 7:46PM We’ve had the dignitaries and we’ve had the national anthems. All that’s left for us to do is to play a game of football. Ireland line out in a 4-4-1-1 with captain Robbie Keane playing in a withdrawn role behind Shane Long — “the Totti role”, as Trap described it. The Czechs are playing what looks like an attacking 4-5-1, with Petrzela and Rezek pushing on behind Baros.
Just the one change at half-time, and it’s not for Ireland. Jiracek is off and Hubschman is on to replace him. James McClean is still nicely snug in his trackie on the bench. 8:57PM GOAL! Republic of Ireland 0-1 Czech Republic (Baros, 50′) Oh dear, oh dear. The first real chance of the second half and the Czechs take full advantage. The Irish defence is all over the shop with nobody coming to close Rezek. He holds the ball up until O’Shea gets drawn out of position and then swivels to play Baros in with a lovely pass. Ward is playing him on by a yard or two and, as the rest of the Irish defence throw their hand in the air and look around for a flag, Baros slips it past Given.