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firing blanks Kevin Doyle admits pressure is mounting around Stephen Kenny as Ireland fail to win again

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Republic of Ireland's James McClean (right) celebrates scoring their side's first goal of the game during the international friendly match at Nagyerdei Stadion, Hungary. Picture date: Tuesday March 30, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Trenka Attila/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use only, no commercial use without prior consent from rights holder.

Republic of Ireland's James McClean (right) celebrates scoring their side's first goal of the game during the international friendly match at Nagyerdei Stadion, Hungary. Picture date: Tuesday March 30, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Trenka Attila/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use only, no commercial use without prior consent from rights holder.

Republic of Ireland's James McClean (right) celebrates scoring their side's first goal of the game during the international friendly match at Nagyerdei Stadion, Hungary. Picture date: Tuesday March 30, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story SOCCER Republic. Photo credit should read: Trenka Attila/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use only, no commercial use without prior consent from rights holder.

Former Ireland striker Kevin Doyle admitted the pressure is piling up around Stephen Kenny after a 1-1 draw against Qatar extended his winless run as manager to 11 matches.

James McClean's fourth minute striker was cancelled out by an equaliser from Mohammed Muntari two minutes into the second half, meaning Kenny now boasts the worst start by a manager since Mick Meagan, who failed to win any of his 12 games in charge between 1969 and 1971.

"The main thing is not to win again," Doyle told RTE. "Eleven games without a win and there is a decent gap until the next game in the summer. There are positives from it, but at the end of the day, we didn't win again.

"It's Qatar. The last two games have been Luxembourg and Qatar and you have to be winning one

"It was a really excellent first half performance, but the second half was disappointing, really disappointing.

"Conceding a goal similar in a way to the Luxembourg goal. It was sloppy, we had the numbers there and could have defended better."

Despite mounting pressure on his manager, defender Dara O'Shea gave his backing to Kenny after the stalemate in Debrecen, as he admitted the players were keen to make up for Saturday's embarrassing 1-0 home defeat against Luxembourg.

"Everyone is behind the manager," O'Shea told RTE. "The other night (against Luxembourg) was down to the players. The manager and staff prepared us right, but we didn't turn up and didn't perform and we got punished.

"It was in the back of our minds coming into this game (to bounce back from the Luxembourg defeat) and we knew that something needed to change.

"We played well in spells, but everyone was hurt and embarrassed from the other night and everyone wanted to go out and put things right."

Meanwhile, McClean also backed Kenny as he insisted the manager needs time to build momentum with the Ireland squad.

"We have been a one-style nation for as long as I can remember, the manager has new ideas and so far the results haven't been how we want them to be but hopefully after Saturday and Luxembourg, that's a turning point," he said.

"We’re really trying to get the manager’s philosophy out there, to be a 'pleasing on the eye' team. It’s going to take time, we’ve got new players. Hopefully we can get that first win soon, things will look brighter going forward.

"We went 1-0 up and it was a well worked goal but we conceded just after half time and that's a disappointment, it would have been nice for the manager to get his first win, hopefully when the first one comes, the rest will follow."

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