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Ireland have now won three and drawn three of their Group D games

Republic of Ireland maintained their unbeaten record in Euro 2020 qualifying as they played out a lacklustre goalless draw in Georgia.

Mick McCarthy's side struggled to create chances against their stubborn opponents, who dominated possession.

Substitute Aaron Connolly was denied a dream debut when his low shot late on was saved, before Shane Duffy headed straight at the goalkeeper.

The result means Ireland stay top of Group D with 12 points from six games.

Denmark, however, can move above them on goal difference if they beat Switzerland later on Saturday (17:00 BST)

Connolly comes close for shot-shy Ireland

Connolly came on in the 79th minute for his international debut

The one significant moment in an otherwise forgettable encounter was the late introduction of Connolly, the 19-year-old Brighton forward who has been in the headlines in recent weeks for his Premier League exploits.

The teenager has scored two goals in five games for the Seagulls and his introduction certainly provided the energy and creativity that had been absent for the best part of 80 minutes.

After running on to a loose ball to test the Georgia goalkeeper with a low drive shortly after coming on, he had another chance soon after, racing through before putting a shot in the side-netting.

With six goals from six games, Ireland have the worst strike rate out of the top three teams in their group and only once have they managed to score more than one goal in a game. Connolly's brief appearance at least provided a glimpse of what he could offer a mis-firing forward line.

"I wouldn't say I was nervous I was excited, it is international debut, the proudest moment you can achieve," Connolly said after the game.

"I got two chances and probably should have put one of them away. It is a good overall performance and we will take a point."

Stubborn Georgia frustrate Ireland again

This will have been a case of deja vu for Ireland, who faced Georgia in similar circumstances in qualifying for the 2018 World Cup two years ago.

They were unbeaten and on top of their group but floundered to an unconvincing 1-1 draw before ultimately failing to make the finals of the tournament in Russia.

Once again, Ireland found Georgia tricky opponents to overcome as the hosts dominated for large periods of this game, although never really tested Darren Randolph.

Republic of Ireland have faced Georgia more times without ever losing than they have against any other team (W9 D2 L0).

Georgia have won just one of their last 17 qualifying matches (D7 L9), beating Gibraltar 3-0 in June.

Nine not out for Ireland - the stats

    Republic of Ireland are unbeaten in their last nine matches in all competitions (W4 D5 L0), their longest such run since June 2012 (15 games). Republic of Ireland have scored just eight goals in their last 13 away matches in all competitions, never netting more than once in a game and failing to score on five occasions. Georgia attempted 14 shots in this game but failed to direct any on target, while Republic of Ireland landed just three shots on target. Georgia have recorded three consecutive clean sheets in home qualifying matches for the first time since March 2011. Aaron Connolly (19y 258d) became the youngest player to make his Republic of Ireland debut since Michael Obafemi (18y & 136d) against Denmark in November 2018.
    Line-ups Match Stats Live Text

Line-ups

Georgia

    1Loria

    2Kakabadze

    4Kashia

    18GrigalavaBooked at 87mins

    16Tabidze

    13KiteishviliSubstituted forAburjaniaat 90'minutes

    7Kankava

    9OkriashviliSubstituted forLobjanidzeat 79'minutes

    10Ananidze

    8Qazaishvili

    11KvilitaiaSubstituted forShengeliaat 73'minutes

Substitutes

    3Khocholava

    5Kvirkvelia

    6Daushvili

    12Makaridze

    14Lobjanidze

    15Aburjania

    17Kupatadze

    19Shengelia

    20Kharaishvili

    22Navalovski

    23Lobzhanidze

R. of Ireland

    23Randolph

    2Coleman

    4Duffy

    5Egan

    7Doherty

    6WhelanBooked at 65mins

    14HourihaneSubstituted forWilliamsat 90+3'minutes

    12RobinsonSubstituted forBrowneat 73'minutes

    13Hendrick

    11McClean

    21CollinsSubstituted forConnollyat 79'minutes

Substitutes

    1O'Hara

    3Williams

    8Browne

    9Maguire

    10Hogan

    15Byrne

    16Travers

    17Connolly

    18O'Dowda

    19Judge

    20Cullen

    22Long

Referee:

Marco Guida

Match Stats

Home TeamGeorgiaAway TeamR. of Ireland

Possession

Home56%

Away44%

Shots

Home14

Away7

Shots on Target

Home0

Away3

Corners

Home5

Away3

Fouls

Home9

Away11

Live Text

Posted at

Match ends, Georgia 0, Republic of Ireland 0.

Full TimePosted at 90'+5'

Second Half ends, Georgia 0, Republic of Ireland 0.

Posted at 90'+5'

Attempt saved. Shane Duffy (Republic of Ireland) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Jeff Hendrick with a cross.

Posted at 90'+4'

Corner, Republic of Ireland. Conceded by Jimmy Tabidze.

Posted at 90'+3'

Attempt missed. Levan Shengelia (Georgia) left footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Jano Ananidze.

SubstitutionPosted at 90'+3'

Substitution, Republic of Ireland. Derrick Williams replaces Conor Hourihane.

Posted at 90'+2'

Attempt missed. Aaron Connolly (Republic of Ireland) left footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Glenn Whelan following a fast break.

Posted at 90'

Attempt saved. Aaron Connolly (Republic of Ireland) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

SubstitutionPosted at 90'

Substitution, Georgia. Giorgi Aburjania replaces Otar Kiteishvili.

Posted at 89'

Attempt missed. Otar Kakabadze (Georgia) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left.

BookingPosted at 87'

Gia Grigalava (Georgia) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Posted at 87'

Foul by Gia Grigalava (Georgia).

Posted at 87'

Conor Hourihane (Republic of Ireland) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Posted at 86'

Corner, Georgia. Conceded by John Egan.

Posted at 85'

Hand ball by Conor Hourihane (Republic of Ireland).

Posted at 83'

Attempt missed. Guram Kashia (Georgia) header from the centre of the box is high and wide to the right following a corner.

Posted at 83'

Corner, Georgia. Conceded by Shane Duffy.

Posted at 80'

Corner, Georgia. Conceded by Alan Browne.

Posted at 80'

Attempt blocked. Otar Kiteishvili (Georgia) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Levan Shengelia.

SubstitutionPosted at 79'

Substitution, Georgia. Elguja Lobjanidze replaces Tornike Okriashvili because of an injury.

SubstitutionPosted at 79'

Substitution, Republic of Ireland. Aaron Connolly replaces James Collins.

Posted at 75'

Attempt missed. Jeff Hendrick (Republic of Ireland) right footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the right.

SubstitutionPosted at 73'

Substitution, Georgia. Levan Shengelia replaces Giorgi Kvilitaia.

SubstitutionPosted at 73'

Substitution, Republic of Ireland. Alan Browne replaces Callum Robinson.

Posted at 69'

Otar Kiteishvili (Georgia) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Posted at 69'

Foul by Jeff Hendrick (Republic of Ireland).

Posted at 67'

Foul by Otar Kiteishvili (Georgia).

Posted at 67'

Jeff Hendrick (Republic of Ireland) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Posted at 66'

Attempt missed. Jano Ananidze (Georgia) right footed shot from outside the box is too high from a direct free kick.

BookingPosted at 65'

Glenn Whelan (Republic of Ireland) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Posted at 65'

Jano Ananidze (Georgia) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Posted at 65'

Foul by Glenn Whelan (Republic of Ireland).

Posted at 59'

Foul by Gia Grigalava (Georgia).

Posted at 59'

James Collins (Republic of Ireland) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Posted at 58'

Attempt blocked. Otar Kakabadze (Georgia) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Valeri Qazaishvili.

Posted at 55'

Foul by Jimmy Tabidze (Georgia).

Posted at 55'

Jeff Hendrick (Republic of Ireland) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Posted at 53'

Hand ball by Giorgi Kvilitaia (Georgia).

Posted at 53'

Attempt blocked. Otar Kiteishvili (Georgia) header from the centre of the box is blocked.

Posted at 53'

Attempt blocked. Jimmy Tabidze (Georgia) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jano Ananidze with a cross.

Show more updates

goal

Source: bbc.com

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