04302017

Iceland beat Republic in Dublin friendly

Robbie Brady battles with Iceland's Rurik Gislason

Robbie Brady captained the Republic in Seamus Coleman’s absence

The Republic of Ireland’s 15-game unbeaten run at the Aviva Stadium ended as their under-strength side were beaten by Iceland in the friendly.

Hordur Magnusson’s superb 21st-minute free-kick secured victory as Iceland bossed the first half and then dealt with the Republic’s second-half rally.

Preston’s Daryl Horgan was the pick of the Republic’s four debutants.

John Egan and Conor Hourihane both started, with Horgan’s Preston team-mate Andy Boyle used off the bench.

The Republic lacked urgency in the first half, with Iceland’s Aron Sigurdarson the perfect link between midfield and attack, but the home side picked up the pace in the second period with Horgan producing a couple of dangerous crosses.

But the home team’s flat first half proved their undoing as they were unable to rouse themselves four days after captain Seamus Coleman suffered a horrific double leg fracture in the World Cup qualifying draw with Wales.

In Coleman’s absence, Burnley’s Robbie Brady captained the Republic from left-back, but his normally reliable crossing and set-piece delivery deserted him on several occasions.

James McClean battles with Birkir Saevarsson at the Aviva Stadium<!–

James McClean partnered Kevin Doyle in the Republic’s attack

Hendrick & McClean only starters from Wales game

Jeff Hendrick and James McClean were the only players to retain starting roles from Friday’s goalless draw, as Brentford’s Egan and Aston Villa’s Hourihane were handed debuts in central defence and midfield.

Iceland boss Heimir Hallgrimsson made eight changes from the weekend World Cup qualifying win over Kosovo, but his side were still able to show the organisation which characterised their march to the quarter-finals at Euro 2016.

Egan made a reasonably assured opening to his international career, only to concede the free-kick on the edge of the box which was beautifully curled over the wall by Bristol City full-back Magnusson.

With the Republic’s midfield failing to function and forwards Kevin Doyle and McClean not gelling, Iceland dominated the second quarter with Alfred Finnbogason going close as the visitors began to attack in waves.

The Republic produced a much-improved second half as Aberdeen’s Jonny Hayes and Horgan produced a series of dangerous crosses, before Doyle and substitute Callum O’Dowda had efforts blocked.

But while there was home huff and puff, Iceland stood firm to clinch the victory their first-half superiority warranted.

Aron Sigurdarson (left) congratulated Iceland goalscorer Hordur Magnusson<!–

Aron Sigurdarson (left) particularly excelled in the first half for Iceland

Man of the match – Aron Sigurdarson

With skipper Aron Gunnarsson and Olafur Skulason winning the central midfield battle against Hendrick and Hourihane, man of the match Sigurdarson was able to link with Kjartan Finnbogason and Jon Dadi Bodvarsson to good effect.

Sigurdarson was replaced after 65 minutes but remained the pick of the performers in Dublin.

More international reports

Live Text

Match ends, Republic of Ireland 0, Iceland 1.

Second Half ends, Republic of Ireland 0, Iceland 1.

Attempt saved. Andrew Boyle (Republic of Ireland) header from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Cyrus Christie.

Offside, Iceland. Óttar Magnús Karlsson tries a through ball, but Arnor Smárason is caught offside.

Eunan O’Kane (Republic of Ireland) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Arnor Smárason (Iceland).

Substitution, Iceland. Ari Freyr Skúlason replaces Rúrik Gíslason.

Attempt blocked. Robbie Brady (Republic of Ireland) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Kevin Doyle.

Corner, Republic of Ireland. Conceded by Hördur Bjorgvin Magnusson.

Substitution, Iceland. Vidar Ari Jonsson replaces Birkir Saevarsson.

Foul by Eunan O’Kane (Republic of Ireland).

Rúrik Gíslason (Iceland) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Republic of Ireland. Conceded by Elias Mar Omarsson.

Substitution, Iceland. Arnor Smárason replaces Olafur Skulason.

Attempt missed. Sverrir Ingi Ingason (Iceland) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Aron Gunnarsson with a cross.

Corner, Republic of Ireland. Conceded by Sverrir Ingi Ingason.

Attempt blocked. Callum O’Dowda (Republic of Ireland) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Eunan O’Kane.

Substitution, Republic of Ireland. Callum O’Dowda replaces Aiden McGeady.

Substitution, Republic of Ireland. Shane Long replaces James McClean.

Substitution, Iceland. Óttar Magnús Karlsson replaces Kjartan Finnbogason.

Daryl Horgan (Republic of Ireland) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Birkir Saevarsson (Iceland).

Sverrir Ingi Ingason (Iceland) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

James McClean (Republic of Ireland) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Sverrir Ingi Ingason (Iceland).

Substitution, Iceland. Elias Mar Omarsson replaces Aron Sigurðarson.

Offside, Republic of Ireland. Eunan O’Kane tries a through ball, but James McClean is caught offside.

Aiden McGeady (Republic of Ireland) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Jón Dadi Bödvarsson (Iceland).

Substitution, Republic of Ireland. Andrew Boyle replaces John Egan.

Substitution, Republic of Ireland. Stephen Gleeson replaces Jeff Hendrick.

Substitution, Republic of Ireland. Eunan O’Kane replaces Conor Hourihane.

Substitution, Republic of Ireland. Daryl Horgan replaces Jonny Hayes.

Jonny Hayes (Republic of Ireland) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Rúrik Gíslason (Iceland).

Attempt missed. Aron Gunnarsson (Iceland) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

Corner, Republic of Ireland. Conceded by Hördur Bjorgvin Magnusson.

Substitution, Iceland. Holmar Örn Eyjolfsson replaces Ragnar Sigurdsson.

Corner, Republic of Ireland. Conceded by Sverrir Ingi Ingason.

Corner, Republic of Ireland. Conceded by Hördur Bjorgvin Magnusson.

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