Republic of Ireland team profile

Ireland qualified for their first tournament in 1988, opening their campaign with a 1-0 win against England, but did not return to the EURO finals until 2012, when they lost all three games.

Ray Houghton & Kevin Moran (Republic of Ireland)

Best result: group stage 1988, 2012
Coach: Martin O'Neill
Leading scorer: 
all-time – Robbie Keane (67); current – Robbie Keane (67)
Most appearances: all-time – Robbie Keane (143); current – Robbie Keane (143)
Association formed: 1921
Nickname: Boys in Green
Where they play: Dublin Arena

The Republic of Ireland made their major tournament debut in 1988, memorably beating England and only just failing to pip eventual winners the Netherlands to the last four. Englishman Jack Charlton also steered them to the next two FIFA World Cups, the first of them, in Italy, bringing a place in the quarter-finals. A third World Cup was reached in 2002 but Ireland did not return to the UEFA European Championship until 2012, when Giovanni Trapattoni's side lost all three matches in a tough group.

EURO predigree
Matches played
P127 W51 D37 L39 F186 A147
Final tournament: P6 W1 D1 L4 F3 A11
Qualifying: P121 W50 D36 L35 F183 A136

Ireland qualified for their first major tournament in the 1988 UEFA European Championship, opening their campaign with a famous 1-0 win against England thanks to Ray Houghton's early header. They then held the Soviet Union 1-1 and Charlton's side were only edged out for a semi-final place in West Germany by an 82nd-minute goal for the Netherlands.

Ireland narrowly missed out on the final tournament in 1992 and lost play-offs to the Netherlands and Turkey in 1996 and 2000 respectively. They finished third in their qualifying groups for both 2004 and 2008 but made the 2012 finals; beaten to an automatic place by Russia, they defeated Estonia in the play-offs. They had performed consistently throughout, at one point going eight matches (friendlies included) without conceding, establishing a new national record. Trapattoni's side arrived in Poland and Ukraine 14 games unbeaten, but that was soon forgotten as they lost 3-1 to Croatia, 4-0 to Spain and 2-0 to Italy.

Memorable EURO matches
08/10/2015: Republic of Ireland 1-0 Germany, UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying
Martin O'Neill's side beat the reigning world champions thanks to Shane Long's 70th-minute strike.

12/06/1988: England 0-1 Republic of Ireland, 1988 UEFA European Championship group stage
Houghton's header ensured victory on Ireland's debut at a major tournament.

30/10/1974: Republic of Ireland 3-0 Soviet Union, 1976 UEFA European Championship qualifying
A Don Givens hat-trick at Dublin's Dalymount Park gave the Irish a memorable triumph.

Did you know?
Ireland made the two-legged 1964 quarter-finals but were beaten 7-1 on aggregate by Spain, who were to host and win the four-team finals.

*Last updated on 18/11/15