Kerr delighted with win
By Tom Adams
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Ireland boss Brian Kerr was obviously delighted with beating Portugal.Ireland boss Brian Kerr was obviously delighted with overcoming Euro 2004 finalists Portugal at Lansdowne Road, although felt his side perhaps deserved more from the game.
Ireland came out 1-0 winners against Luiz Felipe Scolari's side, and Kerr was pleased with how his young charges handled the high profile friendly.
"Well I'm very, very pleased, they were a class act," said Kerr.
"I think it's a fantastic scalp for us, we ended up with quite an inexperienced team, in the second half we had a lot of young players on the pitch, they were physically much stronger than us as well.
"We restricted them to long shots from outside the box, one of them looked a bit close but Shay (Given) got a touch on it, I think we made eight decent enough chances, we were lucky not to be two up really with Robbie (Keane's) that hit the post."
Stopper Andy O'Brien picked up his first international goal with a first half strike, and Kerr was pleased to see the vital opener come from a slightly unusual source.
However just before the goal, Ireland's player of the year Kevin Kilbane appeared to be tripped in the penalty box.
"You are happy for them to come anywhere, I think people are saying we are relying too much on Robbie Keane, and Andy had a very good all round game," continued the Ireland boss.
"Some of the set pieces didn't go as well as we would have liked but it was very difficult conditions for both teams, a windy night, it was hard to direct the corner kicks exactly where you wanted them.
"Some of Andy's were over hit, and then we got a goal from a set piece. We should have had a penalty just before the corner kick was given, Kevin Kilbane was fouled in the penalty area."
Damien Duff and Andy Reid were inspirational on the night and some of their flair play was breathtaking, a fact which Kerr duly recognised as well as applauding the blank scoresheet.
He concluded: "(A clean sheet) says a lot for the team play as well, everybody worked so hard.
"Duff and Andy Reid on the flanks, and Clinton and Robbie up front, to restrict them as much as possible, to stop them getting into a rhythm.
"They are a fantastic team, moving the ball around so well, but at times we played some spectacular stuff ourselves, and we showed that we have a bit of something about us."