Flood dampens Cyprus celebrations

Cyprus 1-1 Republic of Ireland Cyprus secured their first point of the qualifying campaign, but it could have been all three in Larnaca.

Cyprus secured their first point of the UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualifying campaign with a draw against the Republic of Ireland at the GSZ stadium in Larnaca.

Huge relief
The result came as a huge relief for new coach Andros Kouloumbris who saw his side swept aside 5-1 in their previous game against Switzerland, but in the end his team were left to rue missed chances as the Irish scored a late equaliser.

Sloppy defending
Cyprus took the lead after good pressure and some sloppy Irish defending just after the half-hour mark. Anthos Solomou dispossessed Paul McShane near the corner flag and his ball into the area found Nea Salamis FC striker Antonis Panayi, who had no problem beating off-guard goalkeeper Wayne Henderson.

Flood to the rescue
Cyprus spurned a few chances early in the second half and the Irish made them pay on 77 minutes. Aidan McGeady's clever corner evaded the Cypriot defence and Coventry City FC forward Willo Flood pounced to beat goalkeeper Demetris Stylianou for the equaliser to the delight of the 1,000 travelling Irish fans.