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Saturday, 1 June, 2002, 09:45 GMT 10:45 UK
Lawro's Ireland view

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Ireland's 1-1 draw with Cameroon is a great result for them and will leave them upbeat for their forthcoming matches.

At one stage it looked unlikely Mick McCarthy's men would avoid defeat, especially in the last 10 minutes of the first half, when Ireland were all over the place.

In the first 45 minutes Cameroon showed what a good side they can be, knocking the ball about and making chances.

Samuel Eto'o had a 10 minute spell when he caused the Irish defence all sorts of problems.

Cameroon were the better side. They were more adventurous and they created more scoring opportunities.

It was no surprise when they took the lead, and typically Eto'o was involved.

He beat Steve Staunton and Patrick Mboma took his chance well.

Damien Duff and Bill Tchato in aerial challenge
Ireland looked distinctly second best at that point, but they managed a remarkable turn around in the second half.

Suddenly they took the game to Cameroon and they started to benefit from their positive attitude.

Cameroon retreated and were made to look ordinary as Ireland produced a vastly-improved all-round display.

The supply was better and the team looked like candidates for qualification from the group.

Everything about the performance was more incisive and I was impressed with the way they re-organised after the break.

Matt Holland kept his shot low and went for placement rather than power.

He couldn't have hit it any sweeter.

And they almost won it but Robbie Keane's excellent shot from the edge of the box cannoned back of the upright.

Keane's first touch was great and he hit it so early the goalkeeper did not even see it.

But the point, and the manner in which it was won, will put Ireland in a positive mood for their next match against Germany.


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GROUP E
  P GD PTS
GERMANY 3 +10 7
IRELAND 3 +3 5
CAMEROON 3 -1 4
SAUDI ARABIA 3 -12 0

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