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Visitors should beware of the noisy Lansdowne Road

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They saved their blushes with a narrow win over San Marino, but Lithuania expects Ireland to pose a major threat to them in Dublin tomorrow despite a heavily changed squad.

Tephen Kenny is expected to adjust his starting XI in the home friendly against Lithuania from the 2-2 draw with Belgium, with the likes of Dara O’Shea, Conor Hourihane and Troy Parrott ready to join the squad. Lithuania coach Valdas Ivanauskas, one of his most famous internationals in his own playing days, has retraced Saturday’s 2-2 draw and recent games against Ireland and with a large crowd expected in Dublin he is wary of a night of testing.

“I think they certainly won’t play the same line-up they played against Belgium. But no matter who comes into the team, the tactics don’t change at all, these players have the same potential,” said Ivanauskas.

“Of course it will be difficult to listen to, 33,000 have already been sold, the atmosphere there is fantastic.

“I was impressed by the quality of the game against Belgium, although the Belgian team missed their big names, but the second and third choices were sometimes even better.

“It’s good for their coach to have that choice. And on the Irish side it’s a very strong mobile team, the support has been incredible. This match made a really good impression.”

It’s a tough time for Lithuania, their side ranked 137th in the world, but in European comparison are only Andorra, Malta, Moldova, Liechtenstein, Gibraltar and San Marino below. They won 2-1 away at San Marino on Saturday, but the win was costly as key players Paulius Golubickas and Linas Mėgelaitis, who scored Saturday’s winner, are unfortunately injured.

“These two defeats are really very painful for us, because our entire central midfield is gone. This is our situation but we have to deal with it, we have to play,” he added.

https://www.independent.ie/sport/soccer/visitors-wary-of-raucous-lansdowne-road-41493037.html Visitors should beware of the noisy Lansdowne Road

Fry Electronics Team

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