James McClean: ‘All around we weren't good enough: our passing, our energy, our defending, our finishing’

James McClean admitted it had been a lacklustre Republic of Ireland display as Shane Duffy's first senior international goal was enough only to claim a 1-1 draw in their World Cup qualifier in Georgia.

The Irish rode their luck after Duffy headed the visitors into a dream fourth-minute lead, but they were unable to capitalise upon it as Georgia hit back in determined fashion.

They levelled 11 minutes before the break through Valeri Kazaishvili and enjoyed much the better of the game for long periods, but ultimately ended it still awaiting their first Group D victory.

Georgia's Nika Kvekveskiri and James McClean of Ireland. Pic: INPHO/Ryan Byrne

"It's been a disappointing night," West Brom winger McClean told Sky Sports Football.

"Just not good enough on the night to be honest.

"All around we weren't good enough: our passing, our energy, our defending, our finishing.

"They're a lot better than what people think when you look at their results through the group.

"Saying that I believe we're better, but tonight we didn't show that - all over the pitch they were better, passed the ball better.

"We'll have better nights; hopefully one of those will be on Tuesday."

Ireland host Group D leaders Serbia on Tuesday knowing that victory would take them top and put them on course for next summer's tournament in Russia.

"We know what we need to do Tuesday night, it's as simple as that," McClean added.

"If that goes to plan then tonight doesn't matter but right now we're disappointed and we're a bit angry at ourselves."

Manager Martin O'Neill concurred that his side would have to improve ahead of Tuesday's fixture at the Aviva Stadium.

"It's disappointing because of the performance but we're still in it," he said.

"We did not close down strongly and then when we did have it we gave it away too cheaply which is not a great sign.

"If you analyse it in terms of chances we've had four really good chances to win the game.

"We need to do better because we're up against a very talented side in Serbia on Tuesday night.

"We're going to try and win the game."


KEYWORDS: soccer, ireland, georgia

 

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