Keogh sets sights on victory
Andy Keogh says the Republic of Ireland are looking for nothing less than a win from Friday's qualifier.
Last Updated: 07/10/10 7:43am
Andy Keogh says the Republic of Ireland are looking for nothing less than a win from their Euro 2012 qualifier against Russia.
After an encouraging World Cup campaign which fell only just short under controversial circumstances in Paris last November, the Republic kick-started their latest bid for a finals appearance with opening wins over Armenia and Andorra last month.
Currently sitting top of qualifying Group B, Giovanni Trapattoni's side will take on group favourites Russia in Dublin on Friday and Slovakia in Zilina four days later.
Keogh, who is on loan at Cardiff from Wolves, insists Trapattoni has instilled enough self-belief in the squad since taking the helm in 2008 to allow the players to enter the clash confident of a positive result.
"It's the mentality the manager has brought to the team. He has had the core of players now for a couple of years and he has drilled his tactics and his mentality into us," said Keogh.
"Coming to our home patch, we are going into the game looking to win and wanting to win.
"We are playing the two teams who are going to be up there with us competing to qualify, and the more points we can take from them, the better to try to open up a gap.
"If we continue the type of form we have had in the last two games, we should look good.
"It's more of the same. We won the last two games, so you can't complain about that, and there were some good performances as well."
Keogh, who usually plays up front, has featured as a midfield replacement for much of his recent football for Ireland, and could provide relief once again on Friday evening.
But the 24-year-old feels whichever side Trapattoni fields, the Irish should be prepared for a tough clash.
"They are very good. They will be very dangerous, especially on the counter-attack," he said.
"But we will just concentrate on ourselves, try to keep the type of form we have had in the last two games and worry about us scoring and beating them."
Wolves forward Kevin Doyle has been in fine form for his club, despite not yet opening his Premier League account this season, and Keogh expects him to make an impact on Friday.
"From what I hear from the lads, Kevin has been playing very well week in, week out," he added.
"Kevin is the type of player who can come in and do a great job for Ireland, as he does in every game he plays."