"I Think The Crowd Would Really Love It And We'd Be Better That Way"

"I Think The Crowd Would Really Love It And We'd Be Better That Way"

While Ireland may have tried to be a little more expansive against Switzerland last month, Kevin Doyle fears that the side will revert to type on Monday in their do-or-die group qualifier against Denmark.

Speaking on The Buildup podcast, Doyle called for Ireland to change their style of player and push higher up the pitch. 'Put'em under pressure,' some might say.

"I think we'll be a lot tighter and a lot deeper, which I don't think works for us. I think we're better on the front foot and pressurising high up the pitch, giving teams no chance to get on top," explained Doyle.

"We'll sit back against Denmark and they'll get into a rhythym and have a million passes. We'll just hope to break. I'd prefer us to be on the frontfoot and make them uncomfortable from the first minute."

In his analysis, Doyle hit on a point that has irritated fans for a long time: our sudden change of gear once we go behind.

We'll get on the frontfoot if we go 1-0 down, with half an hour to go we'll be up the pitch and pressing them or whatever but I'd like to see us do that from the start. I think it suits us, suits the players we have. We don't ever seem to do it until we really have to.

Our lack of ability to pass the ball, it [sitting back] makes that worse. It gets the crowd bored and subdued. I think it demoralises the players, sitting there watching a team pass it a million times around you.


"We have energy, we mightn't be the most technical team in the world but we have players who'll run and will run all day. Use it.

"Use that enthusiam and energy to do it higher up the pitch. Denmark will like nothing better than us sitting back and them comfortable, passing it around, away from home buding yourself into the game and everyone getting a touch on the ball."

By moving the defensive line higher up the field, Doyle feels it would leave opposition players less comfortable about getting on the ball, while it makes it easier for Ireland to break teams do when they get possession.

"It's easy for me to say, I'm not a manager but I would prefer to be on the front foot, in their faces from the first minute. Make them hate playing. Make the midfielders, like Christian Eriksen, not want to get on the ball because everyone is right up into them, not giving them a second to breath, making them really uncomfortable and getting the crowd behind you from the first minute.

"I think the crowd would really love it - I would love it anyway - and I think we'd be better that way.

"When we win the ball back we're so deep we're not able to pass it out. We have so many players behind the ball that we've no choice, we've to hit it long and there's no one up there.

"We aren't good enough to pass it all the way from the back to the front. If we win the ball high up the pitch it means we don't have to break teams down."

Meanwhile Kevin also spoke about how having a friendly just a few days before such an important qualifier is an unwelcome distraction and he also revealed who he sang his squad initiation duet with the night before his Ireland debut. You can listen to the full interview and indeed the entire episode of The Buildup by subscribing here or searching "The Buildup on" on all good podcast apps.

We're also giving away two tickets to the Denmark match on Monday. To enter the competition all you have to do is rate and review the The Buildup on podcast feed and send us a screenshot of your review on social media or to [email protected]

See Also: Five 5-A-Side Situations Which Need Government Legislation

Mark Farrelly
Article written by
Balls Media Audience Development Manager. Former Miss World 1997 contestant.

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