Player Ratings: James McCarthy particularly poor in deflating defeat to Belgium

Ireland were decisively beaten in Bordeaux

Ireland, Belgium, James McCarthy, John O'Shea

Ireland's James McCarthy, John OÕShea, Ciaran Clark and Robbie Brady dejected ©INPHO/James Crombie

With Ireland up against a team of talented individuals with a point to prove, Belgium were always going to dominate possession and the flow of the game today.

But the manner of the 3-0 defeat to the Red Devils in Bordeaux was still deflating with James McCarthy in particular having a decidedly poor game.

While Ireland defended diligently for 45 minutes, the way the ball was used - or not used to be precise - was mostly disappointing throughout from an Irish perspective as Belgium won deservedly.

Darren Randolph 6

Had no chance with Lukaku's first goal and made more passes than any Ireland player in the first half which tells its own sobering story.

Seamus Coleman 6

The Everton full-back had to deal with Eden Hazard which curtailed his own involvement further up the field. He did get forward more in the second half as Ireland chased the game.

Ciaran Clark 5

Other than his own goal, he had been solid against Sweden and was the same against Belgium alongside John O'Shea for the first hour or so. 

But he made a rash attempt at a tackle as Belgium broke up the field for their third goal, missing the ball and man.

John O'Shea 6

Dealt well with the pace and physicality of Romelu Lukaku in the first half but was a second too late when closing down the Belgian for their opening goal. Was part of a defence which leaked two more.

Stephen Ward 6

The only starting addition since the last match, the ex-Bohemians player did fine at left-back in the first half. However, all of Belgium's second half assists came from his nominal zone on their right flank.

 

Ireland's Shane Long with Thomas Vermaelen, Alex Witsel and Mousa Dembele of Belgium ©INPHO/Donall Farmer

Glenn Whelan 5

Diligent in his defensive duties as expected, but on the ball was a different story even if his overall pass completion stats were tidy enough.

James McCarthy 4

Heavily criticised in some quarters for his performance against Sweden, he was okay in the first half when defending. But his error when going to ground in an attempt to stop Kevin De Bruyne played a crucial part in Belgium's opening goal just after the break. He also failed to track the run of Axel Witsel for the second Belgian goal as his match went from bad to worse.

A virtual passenger when Ireland were in possession and can have no complaints about being subbed off after an hour for James McClean. Will he even start next time out against Italy?

Jeff Hendrick 6

Perched on the right side on paper, he also moved infield regularly but naturally due to the opposition today, he didn't have the same impact as last time as a long-range shooter or creator. 

Wes Hoolahan 5

He found himself in pockets of space between the Belgian midfield and defence on occasion, although he couldn't find that telling pass in the rare times he was in those positions. Worked hard nonetheless and also fulfilled his other tasks as he headed a Belgian effort off the line from a set-piece on 41 minutes. He was subbed off on 71 minutes.

Robbie Brady 6

Worked hard on the left flank but nowhere near as prominent an attacking threat compared to the Belgium game. Also took one for the team in the first half when he cut out a Belgian cross with a rather sensitive part of his anatomy, if you know what I mean.

Shane Long 6

Ireland had their very own St Jude with Long chasing down seemingly lost causes all afternoon and also running the channels. But he didn't see enough of the ball through no fault of his own as Belgium dominated possession. He held up his own end of the bargain though, even if he was left frustrated by a lack of service.

He was taken off for Robbie Keane with 12 minutes to go.

Substitutes

James McClean 

Came on for James McCarthy on 61 minutes. Lost the ball in the opposition corner at the start of the move that led to Belgium's third goal.

Aiden McGeady 

Entered the fray on 71 minutes with Ireland 3-0 down. Headed a 92nd minute chance wide.

Robbie Keane 

Ireland's leading goalscorer was brought on with 12 minutes to go with the game already lost.