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Live Commentary: Republic of Ireland 4-1 USA - as it happened

Relive the action of Ireland's 4-1 friendly win over USA with Sports Mole's live commentary of the clash.
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The Republic of Ireland beat USA 4-1 in Dublin tonight to end their 2014 on a positive note.

Anthony Pilkington fired the Irish into a 1-0 lead, but Mix Diskerud cancelled that one out as both teams went into the break level.

Robbie Brady fired Ireland ahead once more on 56 minutes, before adding a fourth goal late on after James McLean had effectively killed off the game previously.

Below, relive all of the action with Sports Mole's live commentary.


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Good evening all and welcome to our live text commentary of the Republic of Ireland's friendly with USA in Dublin tonight.

Right, there's plenty to look at before kickoff ladies and gents, but let's delve into some team news first, shall we?

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND XI: Given; Christie, Pearce, Clark, Meyler; Quinn, Brady, Pilkington; Murphy, McGoldrick, Stokes

USA XI: Hamid; F. Johnson, Cameron, Besler, Chandler; Beckerman; Bedoya, Diskerud, Morales; Wondolowski, Altidore

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND SUBS: Elliot, Randolph, Walters, Keogh, Coleman, McGeady, McLean, Long, Hendrick, O'Shea

USA SUBS: Johnson, Ream, Garza, Rubio Rubin, Ibarra, Green, Wood Morris

Okay, so I can tell you that Martin O'Neill makes no fewer than 11 changes to the side that lost 1-0 in Glasgow on Friday.

There are debuts for Cyrus Christie and David McGoldrick, with the latter partnering Ipswich Town teammate Daryl Murphy in attack. Anthony Stokes is also in the front line, while Stephen Quinn, Anthony Pilkington and Robbie Brady line up in midfield. Christie starts at left-back, with Ciaran Clark and Alex Pearce in the middle of defence, while David Meyler captains the side.

Also, a doff of the cap to goalkeeper Shay Given, who earns his 127th cap tonight. Fair play to him. Oddly enough, the veteran keeper is being kept out of the Aston Villa team by Brad Guzan, who warms the bench for the visitors tonight.

On to the US of A now and Jurgen Klinsmann has paired Chris Wondolowski with Jozy Altidore up front. Wondo is a two-time MLS Golden Boot winner and has previously been named MVP in 2012. He is also San Jose Earthquakes all-time leading goalscorer. Altidore plays for Sunderland. The less said about him the better.

Mix Diskerud - who sounds like a bit like a DJ - lines up in midfield with Kyle Beckerman, Alejandro Bedoya and Alfredo Morales. Stoke City's Geoff Cameron is the stand-out name in defence, with Tim Chandler, Fabian Johnson and Matt Besler also in there. Bill Hamid starts between the sticks. Nine of the Americans actually played in that World Cup so, despite Ireland boasting homefield advantage, they're right up against it.

This is actually the United States' last chance to bookend a fabulous 2014 with a victory. They won plenty of admirerers for a wonderful World Cup campaign during the summer, which saw them eliminated in the last-16 stage after a pulsating extra-time defeat to Belgium. However, they haven't managed a win in any of their three games since returning from Brazil, and Klinsmann will want to end a very impressive year on a positive note.

And what has 2014 thrown up for Ireland? They opened the year with two defeats back in March, but they've got their Euro 2016 qualifying campaign off to a very decent start, winning seven points from a possible 12 thus far - including a 1-1 draw away to world champions Germany.

DID YOU KNOW? It's been 18 years since the United States have beaten Ireland? It was the U.S Cup in 1996 as the Irish went down 2-1 to the hosts. Granted, they've only played one game since, which Ireland won in 2002, but a USA win is long overdue.

Right, both players enter the field and we're about to have Star Spangled Banner, which quite a few of the American lads don't know the words to it seems.

Not much reaction from the Irish players to their anthem either. This is definitely a friendly, folks.

There's a nice moment for John O'Shea now as the Sunderland defender is being awarded a gold cap after earning centurion status in the 1-1 draw with Germany last month. 100 caps is a major achievement, so well done to him.

We'll have a minute's silence at the Aviva before the young Scottish fan who tragically lost his life in Friday's qualifier with Scotland at Celtic Park.

KICKOFF: Aaaaaaaaaaand we're off in Dublin. USA kick us off but Ireland, playing in their white kit for some reason, are in possession almost straight away.

Poland's Pawel Raczkowski is taking charge of this one, and I can guarantee he won't get that much stick because he looks like Arnold Schwarzenegger guns-wise.

Decent bit of early pressure from the USA as Klinsmann's side win a corner. It's taken short, and Diskerud plays it to Morales, but his left-footed strike is well over the bar.

Incidentally, Robbie Brady is playing left back instead of left-wing, where Anthony Stokes is. I'm a bit upset about that because I've backed Stokes 1st goal.

USA have started this one really well, and Morales's cross-come-shot is flapped away by Shay Given. Very little to speak about from an Ireland perspective thus far.

GOAL!!!!! Ireland 1-0 USA (PILKINGTON)

Where did that come from then? David McGoldrick, on his Ireland debut, plays a perfectly weighted ball through Anthony Pilkington, who nonchalantly dinked over Bill Hamid for what was his first goal for the Boys in Green. Totally against the run of play.

Really good response from the visitors, as Bedoya makes a mug of Brady down that right-hand side before fizzing a dangerous ball into Ireland's box but it's eventually hacked away.

Cyrus Christie, another Ireland debutant tonight, runs into Chris Wondolowski and USA will throw this free kick into the box....

They take it short, as Bedoya plays it to the unsuspecting Fabian Johnson, who whips a decent ball into the box but it's comfortably cleared away.

It's gone a bit quiet in recent minutes, with Ireland comfortably knocking it around in midfield but they're being stifled in their quest for a second goal.

USA growing into this one a bit more now following their strong start, but they're yet to really fashion a clear goalscoring opportunity as of yet. Altidore is a very well travelled striker, having played in four different countries, so it's a big night for him to assert himself here.

Good defending from Alex Pearce, who beats Altidore to a header to deny a certain goal. Bedoya has enjoyed a strong start on that right-hand side of midfield, and it was him who fizzed that ball in. Brady needs to do more to silence the winger.

It's all USA now, and it's all coming down Ireland's left-hand side, as Morales delivers what seems a decent ball into the box but Ciaran Clark does well to thrash away for a corner.

OFF THE POST! USA are growing stronger. They take ANOTHER short corner, with Bedoya finding Fabian Johnson on the edge of the box. Johnson strikes left-footed and watches his fierce shot shave the outside of Shay Given's near post. They're getting closer!

Good work from Stephen Quinn to win Ireland's first corner, chasing Stokes's over-hit ball before getting a toe to it as Johnson diverted it behind for a corner.

CHANCE! It should be two! McGoldrick makes a nuisance of himself by holding the ball up well in USA's box, as the ball falls to Daryl Murphy but the striker's first-time shot is well saved by Hamid. Best chance of the game.

Bedoya is slightly lucky that this is a friendly, because the American winger probably would've been issued with a yellow card for a pretty poor challenge on Stokes.

Brady and Stoke are dovetailing well on the left flank, with the Celtic man playing in Brady but his cross is well held by Hamid. We've seen virtually nothing down the right from either side thus far.

BOOKING! Kyle Beckermann goes into the book for bringing down Pilkington. Dangerous tackle in fair so it was at least a yellow.

GOAL!!!! IRELAND 1-1 USA (DISKERUD)

Excellent team goal for USA, who level up. Altidore lofted a fine cross into the box, as Bedoya cushioned a header into the path of DJ Mix Diskerud to poke home past Given. It all stemmed from a David Meyler error deep in Ireland's half. Really poor from the Hull man.

It's what USA deserved on the balance of play, to be fair. It's been a very even game overall. Can Ireland re-establish the lead? Well they've only got about four minutes in which to do it, with the half-time break looming.

OFF THE BAR! Good lord. USA should be ahead, as Altidore fires Bedoya's brilliant cut-back pass against the woodwork. He should've scored, in truth.

Super ball from Timothy Chandler, whipping in a ridiculously good cross that Cyrus Christie headed away for a corner.

HALF TIME: IRELAND 1-1 USA

That's all she wrote in this half, my friends. Mix Diskerud cancels out a well taken opener from Anthony Pilkington in Dublin. USA look impressive, it has to be said.

Jurgen Klinsmann's side have hit the woodwork twice - once from Fabian Johnson, who has been excellent, and another from Jozy Altidore, who has also been alright up front. Decent half of football overall, with Ireland also missing a very good chance through Daryl Murphy to make it 2-0.

Who has been the stand-out performer for USA then? Probably Alejandro Bedoya, who really has been excellent on his team's right-wing, asking plenty of questions of Robbie Brady at left back. He will have a big say if USA leave Dublin with a decent result.

Right, we're a few minutes away from the restart so join me back here very, very soon for the remainder of what has looked quite a decent game thus far.

SUBSTITUTION: Chris Wondolowski is replaced by Bobby Wood now for this half.

RESTART: Aaaaaaaaaand we are back underway, my friends. Can Ireland re-take the lead, or will USA end up winning this? This one could go either way really.

SAVE! Good save from Shay Given and a good strike from Altidore, who takes aim from an angle and the Newcastle keeper saves with his feet. They've started this half really, really well.

CLOSE! Excellent defending from Fabian Johnson to cut out Pilkington's fine cross, with Daryl Murphy's eyes lighting up but the American left-back did well. Excellent.

GOAL!!! IRELAND 2-1 USA (BRADY)

What an excellent goal, with David McGoldrick playing another fine assist. He looked for all the world to shoot himself, but the Ipswich man chopped to his left where the unmarked Robbie Brady was, before the Hull winger slotted past Hamid at his near post. Brilliant from McGoldrick.

Looks like Aiden McGeady is going to come on. It's probably going to be for Anthony Stokes. We'll see what Fabian Johnson is made of now.

SUBSTITUTION: Yep, it's McGeady for Stokes in a straight swap. The Everton man slots into left midfield where an intriguing battle with Johnson awaits.

We've seen our first glimpse of McGeady, dipping into his bag of tricks to deceive Beckermann, but his searching cross for McGoldrick was dreadful. Ireland fans haven't stopped singing McGeady's name since his introduction, to their credit.

SUBSTITUTIONS: Two more subs to tell you about now as James McLean replaces goalscorer Anthony Pilkington, while Alfredo Morales makes way for Greg Garza as both managers complete their second changes.

SAVE! Shay Given take a bow. The Irish keeper has made a fantastic save to deny Chris Wood, who surged through Ireland's defence like nobody's business, before looking to slot past Given who saved with his feet. Top marks for the 127-cap keeper. Huge chance.

Really poor defending from Ireland, who are caught with their pants down. Bedoya looks like he's strike at goal from a free kick, but he plays it wide to the overlapping Garza, who fizzes a ball into the box but it's thrashed away. Wake up lads!

Hasn't been a good night for striker Daryl Murphy, who hasn't been given a sniff in this second half. They probably need another goal, you know, because USA do pose threats going forward.

SUBSTITUTIONS: Four more subs to tell you about now as Rubio Rubin and Jordan Morris come on for USA, while Jeff Hendricks - no relation to Jimi, I don't think - and Shane Long come on for Ireland.

CHANCE! This was the game had Hendrick scored. The Derby man connected with Brady's corner, but his header glanced just wide of the far post. 10 minutes left.

SAVE! Excellent save from Given to keep Ireland in this one again. It was left-back Garza that that found himself through with Given, but his fierce shot was well saved.

GOAL!!!! IRELAND 3-1 USA (MCLEAN)

That should be that, my friends. Substitute McLean takes aim from outside the box, and his scuffed effort is deflected off Geoff Cameron to leave Hamid with no chance. They needed that one.

SUBSTITUTION: That's the end of Shay Given's night. He is replaced by Newcastle keeper Rob Elliot. Great performance from Given.

GOAL!!!! IRELAND 4-1 USA (BRADY)

This is top class from Brady, swinging a fine left-footed free kick past Bill Hamid. It's getting a bit flattering for Ireland now to be fair.

THREE MINUTES ADDED ON:

BOOKING: Late card for David Meyler, who goes into the book for a challenge on Bedoya.

FULL TIME: IRELAND 4-1 USA

That's all she wrote, my friends. The scoreline looks extremely flattering for Ireland, but they won't care I don't think.

Anyways, that's all from us. Hopefully you've enjoyed our match coverage of this one, and stay tuned for match analysis and player ratings shortly. Cheers folks.

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USA manager Jurgen Klinsmann during the International Friendly match between Scotland and USA at Hampden Park on November 15, 2013
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