It’s fair to say that, for a number of months now, Giovanni Trapattoni hasn’t been the most popular man in Ireland.
His public fall-outs with players, tactical stubbornness and often bizarre team selections have led to growing frustration among fans, and put pressure on the Italian’s shoulders.
Despite sitting in a somewhat respectable position in our group, it is widely expected that Trap will either be relieved of his duties, or step down, before the qualifying campaign comes to a close.
The Irish support cannot be too critical of the results so far. Wins in the Faroe Islands, (just about) in Kazakhstan and a hard-fought point in Stockholm are not to be overlooked while our sole defeat, at the hands of the mighty Germans, is nothing to be ashamed of. That being said, it seems the fans have their minds made up and another win against Austria tomorrow night is unlikely to change that.
Trapattoni named his starting line-up earlier today and many fans were disappointed with the inclusion of Conor Sammon ahead of Wes Hoolahan (pictured), who has been in good form of late for Premier League side Norwich City, and the experienced Kevin Doyle, who was dropped for the Sweden game via a text message.