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Analysing Ireland's Mysterious 'Closed Doors' Friendly With Northern Ireland Using Only Photos

Analysing Ireland's Mysterious 'Closed Doors' Friendly With Northern Ireland Using Only Photos
By Mikey Traynor
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Today the Republic of Ireland played Northern Ireland in a training match behind closed doors.

There were no fans in the stadium, and no television crews present, only staff and officials from both assosciations and a few photographers.

Thankfully Sportsfile were in attendance, and they have provided us with photos of a match that we would otherwise know absolutely nothing about. So, armed with only the following photos, here is our analysis of today's match:

Both teams had to do the official tunnel line up before kick-off.

That must have been awkward.

Stephen Ward leads the Irish side out.

Not the most experienced side then.

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How strange does this look:

Here is the Irish starting XI:

Westwood
Christie, Keogh, Pearce, Ward
McGeady, Arter, Hendrick, McClean
Murphy, McGoldrick

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The managers have a quick chat.

"Lovely day for it in fairness."

We're underway! Alex Pearce wins an early battle with Kyle Lafferty.

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We think, we have no idea at what stage this battle took place.

McClean is dispossessed far too easily by Steven Davis.

He's having a shocker out there... Possibly.

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Murphy loses out to Gareth McAuley.

A cagey start by the looks of things.

Chance for Northern Ireland!

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Richard Keogh blocks a Kyle Lafferty attempt from a dangerous position, Ireland lucky there.

Ireland push on and win a corner, we'll just assume it didn't clear the first man.

What a waste!

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Half time, a drab affair so far?

Wholesale changes for the second half.

Seamus Coleman and Chris Brunt get stuck in.

Oliver Norwood attempts to thread a pass through.

Or that could be a shot, we've no idea. Oh look, there's David Meyler.

McCarthy is on, and is noticeably less sweaty than Davis.

Robbie Brady is getting stuck in as the game nears its conclusion.

Is he at left back there? Hopefully not.

A late corner for Ireland, can we knick the win?

Brady with the delivery...

Nope. It's finished 0-0.

Roy Carroll is reunited with his old Man Utd mates.

Probably for the best that it wasn't on TV.

So there you have it. A lot of positives to take from that match; the weather in Dublin was glorious, Northern Ireland's away kit is lovely, and the lads got some match fitness ahead of the England and Scotland games.

SEE ALSO: Aiden McGeady Offers Advice To Jack Grealish, And Suggests Why The FIFA 15 Ratings Are Wrong

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