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Last Updated: Saturday, 4 September, 2004, 15:56 GMT 16:56 UK
Rep of Ireland 3-0 Cyprus
Morrison (centre) celebrates with Robbie Keane  and Andy O'Brien
Robbie Keane equalled Niall Quinn's goalscoring record in helping the Republic of Ireland to an easy Group 4 World Cup qualifying win over Cyprus.

Keane crashed in his 21st goal from the penalty spot as the Irish destroyed a poor Cypriot side at Lansdowne Road.

In the first half, Clinton Morrison broke his long goal famine and man-of-the-match Andy Reid also found the target with a thunderous shot.

Cyprus offered little threat as the Republic picked up three easy points.

The first half was all one-way traffic as the Republic bore down on the Cyprus defence.

Kevin Kilbane was first to trouble the visitors when he rose off balance to head a cross from Stephen Carr over the bar in the seventh minute.

Then Morrison had two chances to score when he flashed one header wide and had another diving effort held comfortably by Nikos Panayiotou.

John O'Shea tested Panayiotou with a rasping shot and, from the resulting corner, Morrison again headed just wide.

Tremendous save

Morrison's moment of joy finally came in the 33rd minute to give the Republic a deserved lead and break his 11-game international drought.

Damien Duff worked hard down the left and fired over a right-footed cross which the Birmingham striker deftly headed past Panayiotou.

Four minutes later, the Republic went further ahead when Reid let fly with a curling shot from 30 yards into the top right-hand corner.

It was 11 minutes after the interval when Keane's moment arrived.

He stroked in a penalty after Damien Duff had been brought down by Theodotou following a snaking run through the Cypriot defence.

Shay Given was a virtual spectator, but he did pull off a tremendous save when Michael Konstantinou broke through in the 63rd minute.

Duff and substitute Alan Lee went close late on for the Republic, who will travel to Switzerland on Wednesday in a confident mood.


Republic of Ireland: Given, Carr, O'Brien, Cunningham, O'Shea, Kilbane, Kavanagh, Andy Reid, Keane, Morrison, Duff. Subs: Kenny, Finnan, Maybury, Doherty, Breen, Quinn, Lee.

Cyprus: Panayiotou, Theodotou, Kakoyiannis, Okkarides, Lambrou, Charalambous, Charalambides, Satsias, Makrides, Okkas, Michalis Konstantinou. Subs: Michael, Nicolas Georgiou, Iacovou, Augousti, Yiasemi, Krassias, Ilias.

Referee: Levan Paniashvili (Georgia).




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