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Page last updated at 19:28 GMT, Saturday, 6 September 2008 20:28 UK

Trapattoni lauds Republic display

Giovanni Trapattoni
Giovanni Trapattoni felt his late substitutions were necessary

Republic of Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni lauded his team's display in the 2-1 World Cup qualifier win over Georgia as "exceptional".

"Today we began very, very well," said the Republic boss after the game played at the neutral venue of Mainz.

"I said that the first game in the group would be the most important.

"I wasn't angry when we conceded the late goal because we were 2-0 up. Maybe the players thought the game was over and that's an example for us."

Trapattoni added that he had felt the need to bring off goalscorer Kevin Doyle, Steve Finnan and Aiden McGeady in the closing stages to help converse their energies for Wednesday's qualifier in Montenegro.

"I wanted to give Doyle and Finnan the chance to recuperate and give them a bit of a breather."

Glenn Whelan was named man-of-the-match after a solid midfield display capped by the decisive second goal.

Whelan acknowledged that goalkeeper Giorgi Loria should have saved his shot from 30 yards in the 70th minute.

"I heard the fans shouting 'shoot' after a little bit of room had opened up," said the Stoke City midfielder.

"It moved a little bit in the air but the keeper should have done a little bit better."

Whelan said that his performance would give him "confidence" that he is justifying his presence in the Republic side.

"I've always said that I wanted to be here and get as many caps as I can.

"I've been playing all the games (under Trapattoni) but I'll have to keep working hard. There are a lot of players on the bench who could come in."

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see also
Georgia 1-2 Republic of Ireland
06 Sep 08 |  Internationals
Pick your Rep of Ireland XI
05 Feb 07 |  Internationals

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