Darren Randolph: No apologies for Ireland’s style of play
Darren Randolph has no apologies for the Republic of Ireland being difficult to beat. The republic attempts to secure a trip to a third successive European Championship final.
The 32-year-old Middlesbrough goalkeeper has conceded two goals in his country’s five Group D matches to date, with Denmark’s Pierre Emile Hojbjerg and Switzerland’s Fabian Schar the only players to find a way past him.
The republic has taken 11 points from a possible 15 to lead the pack. However, Randolph knows the side must be resilient with trips to Georgia and Switzerland to come next month ahead of Dane’s visit to Dublin in November.
“There are going to be times in every game when you’re going to need to defend. You will have everybody behind the ball,” Randolph said.
“You’ve seen with us in games in the past, we’ve defended for 10 minutes or whole parts of the game. It’s part of football.”
“You don’t want to be camped on the edge of your box for the whole game and just inviting the pressure, but it’s needed at times and I think we’ve shown we’re more than capable of doing it when needed.”
“But we’ve shown already we’re out to attack and cause problems when we can and take it to other teams.”
The Republic’s approach has drawn criticism with Swiss keeper Yann Sommer dismissing it as “very unpleasant” in the run-up to Thursday evening’s 1-1 draw at the Aviva Stadium.
Mick McCarthy’s side, who will face Bulgaria in a friendly on Tuesday, has scored more than one goal in a game only once during the current campaign. Robbie Brady’s injury-time strike secured a 2-0 win over Gibraltar in Dublin in June.
The last time they achieved that feat in a competitive fixture came on the road in Moldova almost three years ago.