Republic of Ireland v England: O'Neill out to erase 1995 memories

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill
Martin O'Neill was appointed Republic of Ireland manager in November 2013

Republic of Ireland boss Martin O'Neill is hoping to erase the memories of the "debacle" of 1995 when England return to Dublin for a friendly on Sunday.

It is 20 years since a section of the travelling support at Lansdowne Road rioted after the Irish took the lead and forced the abandonment of the last game in the city between the nations.

"I call it a debacle because that's exactly what it was," said O'Neill.

"It's still a big game but hopefully life has moved on since then."

The Republic boss is hoping the more cordial atmosphere in which a 1-1 draw at Wembley was played out in May 2013 will be repeated as the Republic prepare for the forthcoming Euro 2016 qualifier against Scotland at the Aviva Stadium.

"It obviously has historic interest and it's a great game for us to be involved in. I've said that since it has been announced, really great.

"We have a big game against Scotland the following week and, barring injury, it will be great preparation for us considering some of the players will not have played for about a month.

"Fitness is what this week is all about, building up to the England friendly game and then forcing it against Scotland."

O'Neill and the bulk of his players met up in Malahide on Monday, with Hull City defender Paul McShane the only one of those present not to train as he continued to nurse a badly-gashed leg.

The Republic lie fourth in Euro 2016 qualifying Group D, with two wins and two draws from their opening five games.

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