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IRELAND MISERY The time to start looking for the positives is over - three things we learned as Ireland lose in Wales

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Shane Duffy, centre, of Republic of Ireland reacts after his side conceded their first goal during the UEFA Nations League B match between Cardiff, Wales. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Shane Duffy, centre, of Republic of Ireland reacts after his side conceded their first goal during the UEFA Nations League B match between Cardiff, Wales. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

SPORTSFILE

Shane Duffy, centre, of Republic of Ireland reacts after his side conceded their first goal during the UEFA Nations League B match between Cardiff, Wales. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

1. These are dog days for Irish football.

An Under-21 team short most of its starters because of injuries and senior call-ups cannot beat Iceland at home to have a great chance of qualifying for a Finals.

The senior team plays well, again short many players, but manages to lose to one of Wales’ only three serious attempt on goal in the match.

Stephen Kenny and all the players should not buy a Lotto ticket any time soon – the luck they have are having right now they wouldn’t even get one number up, never mind six.

2. The Robbie Brady factor

How much have the declining fortunes of Irish football anything to do with the fact that because of injuries Robbie Brady, since scoring that famous goal in Lille four and a half years ago, has missed more Ireland matches than he has played in?

Robbie was a fruitful source of play making for Ireland in Cardiff, he looked like a player that could do things at international level.

But, in Robbie’s prime years, he has just not had the chance to become a pivotal figure in the Irish team.

3. The goal drought continues

That’s seven games now under Stephen Kenny with no win and with one goal scored.

With the exception of England, we haven’t played a top tier nation amid that run of fixtures. The time to start looking for positive shoots is over.

If Kenny doesn’t get a win against Bulgaria serious questions are going to be asked. The new FAI Chief Executive Jonathan Hill has been brought in to raise money by attracting sponsors and filling the Aviva next year when fans will hopefully be allowed to return.

Neither of those things will be happening if this is the offering.

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