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Greece Ends Ireland Hopes Of Reaching Euro 2024 Finals With 2-0 Win


The Republic of Ireland’s dim prospects of competing in the Euro 2024 finals have been ended by Greece’s demoralizing 2-0 home victory.

Giorgos Giakoumakis and Giorgos Masouras’ goals in the first half help the Greeks move ahead of the Netherlands and into second position in Group B.

Even with young scorer Evan Ferguson back in the lineup, Stephen Kenny’s team’s miserable season continued.

Of their six games thus far, Ireland has won just one and dropped the other five.

They are currently in fourth place in the five-team group, 15 points behind the group’s leaders France, who defeated the Netherlands on Friday night to win qualification, and nine points behind the second-place Greeks. They have two games left to play.

Prior to the game on Friday night at the sparsely crowded Aviva Stadium, Kenny had advised his team to never give up hope of qualifying.

Despite a promising first ten minutes in which they twice came tantalizingly close to scoring, the home team put on yet another lackluster performance in front of a disgruntled home crowd.

Odysseas Vlachodimos saved a low attempt from William Smallbone in the opening minutes. Brighton’s Ferguson then hit the post after returning from injury that kept him out of the two international matches in September.

Greece, though, quickly inserted themselves into the contest and prevailed.

Kostas Tsimikas, a left-back for Liverpool, managed to get past Chiedozie Ogbene, the Republic’s finest player on the night, down the left-hand side to score the opening goal for Gus Poyet’s team.

But after he had passed the Luton Town player, it was all quality. Tsimikas delivered an excellent, dipping cross, and Giakoumakis rose to meet it, sending a bullet header into the top corner and leaving Bazunu with no chance.

Shortly into the first half’s extra time, Ogbene lost control in the visitors’ half, setting up a brilliant counterattack by Greece that resulted in the second goal.

Masouras scored his fifth goal in qualification with a low finish after Giakoumakis raced forward and found Dimitris Pelkas at the back post. Pelkas missed his shot, which fell to Masouras.

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