Shay still seething over seeding
Shay Given remains bitter over the seeding of the World Cup play-offs after being paired with France.
Last Updated: 19/10/09 3:35pm
Shay Given remains bitter over Fifa's decision to seed the 2010 World Cup play-offs after the Republic of Ireland were paired with France.
World football's governing body announced that the eight best-placed runners up from the nine qualifying groups would be seeded before the draw was made.
The decision, which was announced shortly before the conclusion of the group campaigns, has caused consternation among the Republic of Ireland squad, even though the same system was employed by Fifa in the past.
Giovanni Trapattoni's side must now tackle the 1998 World Cup winners over two legs on the 14th and 18th of November, with the French enjoying home advantage in the second leg.
Ireland went unbeaten throughout their 10-game campaign, drawing home and away against Italy and coming within a whisker of defeating the World Cup holders at Croke Park.
"The seeding thing is totally unfair. As one of the smaller countries, it is hard enough to qualify at the best of times," Given said.
"To change the rules a couple of weeks before the end of the campaign is ridiculous. But that is what they have done. I do think it is very unfair.
"But we went to Bari and got a result. We also went to Bulgaria. There is great belief that we can go to these big nations and get results.
"We should have beaten Italy last week. They scored with the last kick of the game. We have to learn from that.
"We have enough experience to see the game out but we didn't do it. We do get great belief and confidence from matches like that."
The Manchester City No.1 has called on his international colleagues to use the sense of injustice to their advantage as they target a place in next summer's showpiece in South Africa.
He added: "The seeding thing has spurred us a bit more. You think the whole world is against you.
"If they had made the rules from day one, you would have got your head round it. Just to change it a couple of weeks ago was farcical, as far as the smaller countries are concerned.
"But that is what they have done and we have to get on with it. We want to be in South Africa. Every player wants to play in the World Cup finals against the best players in the world.
"It is a special World Cup when the Irish supporters are there. Hopefully we can get there."