Brilliant Ireland under Coleman’s leadership beat Italy to reach Euros last 16


Ireland have produced one of the greatest performances in their history to book their place in the knock-out stages of Euro2016.

Robby Brady's 85th minute header earned a thoroughly deserved 1-0 win over Italy in Lille.

Martin O'Neill was rewarded for a series of brave selection decisions as he decided to start a new-look defensive pairing and partner Daryl Murphy with Shane Long in attack.

Donegal's Seamus Coleman took the captain's armband to lead his chargers to the next round while Shane Duffy and James McClean put in big shifts.

A dominant Ireland side had two first-half penalty appeals turned down during a stunning first-half display but it appeared as though their chance had been lost as the clock ticked down towards the 90th minute.

However, the introduction of Wes Hoolahan off the bench produced the inspiration needed as the playmaker's inch-perfect cross was met by Brady who headed home one of the most famous goals in Irish football history.

Despite the defeat, Italy still finished top of Group E but Belgium's late goal saw them snatch second place with a 1-0 win over Sweden.

Brady's goal has earned Ireland a date against tournament hosts France on Sunday.