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Page last updated at 22:18 GMT, Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Republic of Ireland 0-2 Brazil

Robinho celebrates after his cross is diverted into the net by Keith Andrews

Brazil turned on the style in the second half at the Emirates Stadium to beat a Republic of Ireland side that had impressed in the first 45 minutes.

Kevin Doyle went close for the Irish early on but Brazil took the lead on 44 minutes after Keith Andrews diverted a Robinho cross past Shay Given.

Dani Alves should have added to Brazil's lead after the break as the Samba Boys took total control.

The second goal came on 76 minutes as Robinho finished off a glorious move.

After a quiet start, Robinho produced the kind of form which convinced Manchester City to shell out £32.5m for the midfielder in September 2008.

The Republic started with nine of the side which lined up in the World Cup play-off second leg against France with Stephen Kelly and Paul McShane replacing the injured John O'Shea and Richard Dunne.

Shay Given and Kevin Kilbane were both making their 103rd appearance, edging them ahead of Steve Staunton as Ireland's most-capped players.


Giovanni Trapattoni's side produced a promising opening with Robbie Keane charging into a threatening position in the third minute before his angled shot was easily gathered by Julio Cesar.

As the Republic continued to press, Keith Andrews' attempted pass to Doyle instead found Keane in the penalty area but the Celtic man was unable to pick out a team-mate in the six-yard box.

Brazil produced their first attack in the 12th minute as Kaka got in behind the Irish defence before Andrews produced a perfectly-timed tackle to halt the Real Madrid star.

However, four minutes later the Republic went close to taking the lead as Duff's cross picked out Doyle whose close-range header was punched away by keeper Cesar.

As the pace lifted, Kaka responded with a swerving drive that flew over Given's crossbar and Robinho then had a shot bravely blocked by Paul McShane after a sweeping move.

As the Brazilian improvement continued, Given tipped over a curling Adriano free-kick after McShane had fouled Kaka on the edge of the penalty area.

But the committed Irish had more than held their own as the match neared the interval.

However, Trapattoni's charges suffered a cruel blow before the break as Robinho's low cross was diverted into his own net by Andrews.

Kevin Doyle and Maicon battle for possession at the Emirates Stadium
Kevin Doyle is about to be challenged by Maicon at the Emirates Stadium

Replays indicated that Robinho was offside when Maicon released him as another refereeing call went against the Irish.

After a quiet start to the second half, the Brazilians started to show their class in a series of attacking thrusts that had the Irish backpedalling.

Robinho treated the crowd to multiple step-overs just before the hour mark, as he laid the ball back for Michel Bastos who fired just over Given's crossbar.

Maicon also had sight of goal when he went on a mazy run from the left but Sean St Ledger blocked his shot.

Alves was brought on in the 64th minute and his first touch saw him rob St Ledger then take it around Given - but the Barcelona striker sliced his finish wide with the goal at his mercy.

Robinho had the ball in the net in the Irish net on 70 minutes after Kaka had dispossessed Andrews but the ex-Manchester City man was adjudged offside.

However, the Samba boys were now turning on the style and gorgeous one-touch football on the edge of the Irish box saw Robinho fire in a glorious second goal on 76 minutes.

He took Kaka's back-heel and passed to Grafite before bursting into the area to receive the striker's back-flick and dispatch a fine finish past Given.

It was Robinho's final act as he was immediately withdrawn but he had showed his ability at the London venue.

By that stage, Trapattoni had sent on Wigan's James McCarthy for his first cap after Aiden McGeady and Darron Gibson had been introduced earlier in the second period.

The Republic failed to threaten in the closing 15 minutes of action as Brazil clinched victory in their final scheduled game before the World Cup finals.

Rep of Ireland: Given, Kelly, St. Ledger, McShane, Kilbane, Lawrence (McCarthy 69), Whelan (Gibson 56), Andrews, Duff (McGeady 56), Doyle (Best 78), Keane. Subs Not Used: Westwood, Brian Murphy, Foley, Wilson, Stokes, Cunningham, Long.

Brazil: Julio Cesar, Maicon (Carlos Eduardo 84), Lucio (Luisao 82), Juan, Michel Bastos, Ramires (Dani Alves 64), Silva, Felipe Melo, Kaka, Adriano (Grafite 64), Robinho (Nilmar 77). Subs Not Used: Doni, Thiago Silva, Gilberto, Josue, Julio Baptista, Kleberson.

Att: 40,082

Referee: Mike Dean (England)

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see also
Andrews rueful after Irish defeat
02 Mar 10 |  Football
Wilson adamant on Ireland choice
28 Feb 10 |  Football
Wilson receives Republic call-up
22 Feb 10 |  Football
Republic to face Brazil in March
21 Dec 09 |  Irish
Republic discuss Brazil friendly
03 Dec 09 |  Internationals

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