Ireland manager Mick McCarthy outlined that he found the atmosphere at the Aviva Stadium to be like the “days of old” when David McGoldrick equalised late against Switzerland.
The Boys in Green fell behind against the group’s top seeds in the 75th minute of the game when Fabian Schar found the net brilliantly after a wonderful series of one-touch moves in and around the Irish box.
Switzerland looked much the better side throughout the game but Ireland nicked a crucial late equaliser when David McGoldrick rose highest to head home James McClean’s deflected cross for his first goal at international level.
The equaliser prompted incredible scenes at the Aviva Stadium as fans wildly celebrated what could be a crucial point as Ireland look to qualify for Euro 2020.
Speaking to the media after the game, McCarthy was full of praise for the Irish supporters in attendance and outlined that when McGoldrick’s header found the net it reminded him of games of old.
“The atmosphere was fabulous. When the equaliser went in, that was like days of old. That was Jack’s days and my days of qualifying for the World Cup. The atmosphere was fabulous so I have to thank the fans for that.”
Even when Ireland went behind, the fans remained typically raucous and McCarthy continued by outlining that they have been excellent to him and the players ever since he returned to the Irish dugout.
“They got right behind us. I’ve had really good will shown towards me and it’s the same with the players despite other stuff that has been going on. People believe in the team again, it’s great. It was a great atmosphere.”
A victory would have put Ireland nine points clear of Switzerland in the group but a draw is still a solid result for McCarthy and Co. given the quality their opponents showed at the Aviva tonight.
Ireland have three games remaining in the group and know that they will almost certainly have to beat either Denmark at the Aviva or Switzerland away from home and take three points from Georgia to stand any chance of reaching next year’s Euro 2020 finals.
Up next though for the Boys in Green is a friendly game against Bulgaria on Tuesday night in Dublin.