England 3-0 Ireland: Stephen Kenny's men humbled at Wembley as Jack Grealish stars to bite the hand that fed him
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England 3-0 Ireland: Stephen Kenny's men humbled at Wembley as Jack Grealish stars to bite the hand that fed him

IRELAND suffered their first defeat at the hands of England since 1985 last night as Gareth Southgate's side ran out 3-0 winners at Wembley.

Goals from Harry Maguire, Jadon Sancho and Dominic Calvert-Lewin ultimately put Stephen Kenny's men to the sword as the gulf in class between the two nations was made all too obvious.

The defeat means Kenny is still looking for his first win as Ireland boss, and while victory was far from anyone's expectation, this barren run - where Ireland have failed to score in nearly 500 minutes of football - is just starting to look a little perilous.

London , United Kingdom - 12 November 2020; Declan Rice of England warms up behind Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny during the International Friendly match between England and Republic of Ireland at Wembley Stadium in London, England. (Photo By Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile via Getty Images)
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The night began with an emotional tribute to the late, great Jack Charlton, only for another Jack - one not quite as popular with the Irish people - to set the tone for the evening.

Following his defection to England in 2015 (after featuring 19 times for Irish youth sides), Jack Grealish faced Ireland for the first time and came back to haunt them with an immaculate display.

Aside from setting up Sancho for England's second, his tireless work ethic and eye for a pass all evening saw an already green nation grow even greener with envy, as Ireland could only look on and dream about what might have been.

Jack Grealish

All over the pitch England were simply too strong. Maguire rose above Shane Duffy to head in the opener in what was typical of England's physical and aerial dominance, and the technical brilliance of the likes of Sancho, Grealish and Mount made playing on the floor just as difficult for the Irish.

Calvert-Lewin's second-half penalty completed the rout as Ireland began yearning for the dressing room with over 30 minutes left to play.

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England's striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin (L) scores their third goal from the penalty spot during the international friendly football match between England and Republic of Ireland

Kenny's men weren't blessed with fortune, mind. Captain Seamus Coleman was forced to pull out before kick-off with a hamstring injury, while John Egan was taken off after just 13 minutes with a head injury, but even 'luck of the Irish' couldn't have prevented what was plain and simply a stark reminder of just how low Ireland have sunk.

The focus now will turn to facing Wales in Cardiff on Sunday, then Bulgaria in Dublin next week in the Nations League, but it's fair to say, accepting this last-minute friendly with England has been anything but the 'morale booster' it was intended to be.