Well, where do you start?
Had the people behind Amazon’s documentaries on Guy City and Tottenham access to a crystal ball, they might have pointed in this manner.
Never mind hiding in the shadows for a complete season, the last 2 weeks would have netted them a whopper warts and all series.
Unfortunately, extremely little of it will be remembered for the right reasons as Ireland crashed out of the Euros and two gamers and an FAI staffer were laid low by Covid-19
The FAI’s handling of its operations was under a spotlight with concentrate on flight strategies, Covid screening conspiracies and the manager and CEO at chances openly.
Here, Mirror Sport takes a different look back at the amazing international window that was.
A is for … Aaron and Adam
We’ll never know if Connolly and Idah would have turned the incorporate Slovakia. Robbed of the opportunity, Connolly’s anger was evident after the Finland game.
B is for … Boisterous Slovaks
The playoff was behind-closed-doors in Bratislava, however it didn’t stop some residents inside the ground roaring” C’mon England “whenever Irish players stepped up for penalties.
C is for … Covid
Ireland’s bubble burst when it emerged the defence was flimsy. The drama began ahead of the Slovakia video game when an FAI employee evaluated positive and all of it snowballed from there.
D is for … Range
Size does not matter, distance does. The CSI-like analysis into the seat-gate fiasco to Bratislava centred on 1.7 m and 1.9 m. Should this not have been done before leaving Dublin?
E is for … 8
Mick McCarthy stacked pressure on Stephen Kenny in Helsinki when he went 5 games without win. Outcomes are all that matters, he said. It took Mick eight tries the very first time around.
F is for … Ending up
In the 8 Euro qualifiers under Mick McCarthy, Ireland registered 24 shots on target and scored 7 times. In Stephen Kenny’s five games, there have been 15 shots on target and one goal scored. Ireland lack a killer edge.
G is for … Giggs
Wales boss Ryan Giggs could not discover a method past Ireland however rather than applaud Ireland’s new-look, he hammered the “slow” Aviva pitch instead claiming it stopped his group playing.
H is for … HSE
Choices over the Bratislava flight, figuring out close contacts or repatriating stranded staff, the HSE made as numerous essential decisions to this triple header as Ireland’s management group.
I is for … Injuries
Covid absences made the headings however Ireland’s injury toll was considerable with Seamus Coleman, David McGoldrick, James McCarthy, Harry Arter and Darragh Lenihan all crocked.
J is for … Jonathan Hill
The Englishman’s appointment as FAI CEO is impending and one of his very first tasks will be evaluating the fallout behind the scenes of this triple-header ahead of next month.
K is for … Knight
Cabinteely are expected to benefit handsomely after their ex-youth star Jason Knight – turning heads at Derby – made his senior bow in Helsinki after being parachuted in from the 21 s.
L is for … Lobotka
It feels like a life time ago that Slovakia star Stanislav Lobotka was holed up in an Italian hotel with no possibility of making the playoff.
(Image: Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile via Getty Images)
N is for … Norn Iron
Northern Ireland are choosing Euro magnificence on the very same night the Republic of Ireland remain in Sarajevo to deal with Bosnia in a friendly between the playoff losers that nobody wants. Great.
O is for … Owens
Gary Owens, the interim CEO, didn’t cover himself in glory on radio when talking about the flight debacle. No accountability over seat switching that was dismissed as a ‘red herring’.
P is for … Penalties
Ireland hadn’t been involved in a penalty shootout since their 2002 World Cup exit to Spain however the Euro 2020 dream passed away a death in a similar lottery game in Bratislava.
Q is for … Quinn
Protecting the FAI operations, Niall Quinn released a two-footed attack on UEFA and their screening process, declaring Ireland had been ‘sold a pup’ by the European governing body.
R is for … Robbie Keane
The Twitterati noted that Ireland’s record scorer – still contracted to the FAI – isn’t up to much these days. Could he coach the strikers in the art of ending up? Unlikely in this set-up.
S is for … SYNLAB
Few on these coasts had actually become aware of UEFA’S Covid-testing business previously, and for excellent factor. We’re up to speed with their work now.
T is for … Time
There’s massive goodwill for Stephen Kenny however time is not boundless. Next month’s games look low profile, but they have big considerable for a manager desperate for a win
U is for … Ugly
We hit a point with the Ireland group where casual fans weren’t troubled about tuning in because the football was ‘unsightly’. Well, it’s currently much better even if the outcomes are not.
V is for … Getaway
Providing we can travel freely already, Ireland fans may want to skidaddle next summertime when the Euros pitch into Dublin. England could face Germany here in the Last16
W is for … Woodwork
Ireland struck enough of it over the 3 games however when your luck’s not in, it’s not in. Believe Alan Browne and Matt Doherty in Slovakia and Enda Stevens in Finland.
X is for … X-Factor
For all the focus on the Kenny transformation, his group is doing not have an X-factor, a gamer with a little bit of wow. Aaron Connolly may yet be that gamer but admits he’s too selfish in his play.
Y is for … Yellow
James McClean bagged 2 late on against Wales and needs to wait to see if he’ll be slapped with a lengthier restriction after challenging Ethan Ampadu on the deck prior to leaving the pitch
Z is for … Zoom
Even before the Covid cases rocked the Irish camp, the majority of journalism conferences happened over Zoom to protect the ‘bubble’. No closet breakdowns, the good news is.