• World Cup qualifying

Trapattoni leaves Ireland post

ESPN staff
September 11, 2013
Giovanni Trapattoni is facing the axe after Ireland's defeats to Sweden and Austria © Getty Images

Giovanni Trapattoni has left his role as Republic of Ireland manager with the country's chances of reaching the 2014 World Cup all but over.

The Football Association of Ireland (FAI) had said it was reviewing Trapattoni's position in light of Friday's 2-1 defeat to Sweden and Tuesday's 1-0 loss to Austria, which have left Ireland six points adrift of a play-off place with two games remaining.

And on Wednesday morning, the FAI confirmed the Italian's departure, with a statement reading: "The Football Association of Ireland, Giovanni Trapattoni and Marco Tardelli today (September 11) announced that following an amicable meeting this morning, they have parted company by mutual consent."

Trapattoni had taken charge of Ireland in 2008 and narrowly missed out on a place in the 2010 World Cup after a play-off with France before guiding the country to Euro 2012.

The 74-year-old, who was on a £1 million-a-year contract, said "I want to thank everyone in Ireland who has given us their support during our time here which has always meant a lot to us.

"We leave this country with emotion because we understand the Irish supporters who have a well-deserved international reputation and they have our utmost respect. I would like to thank John Delaney, Paddy McCaul, Michael Cody and the FAI Board for their support and friendship over the last five and a half years.

"I would also want to thank all FAI staff members, including the backroom team and the players who have been great to work with during the last three campaigns. I wish them well in the future and hope that the job we have done leaves everything in a good place for my successor to take over."

FAI Chief Executive John Delaney said: "We thank Giovanni Trapattoni, Marco Tardelli and Franco Rossi for the last five and a half years during which we qualified for our first major tournament in ten years and were close to qualification for 2010 World Cup in South Africa after the play-off in France.

"This particular World Cup campaign has been disappointing but Giovanni leaves us with a group of good young players which should form the basis of the squad that the new manager will use for the European Championships in France 2016 when 24 teams qualify.

"The Board of the FAI will meet in due course to discuss the process in relation to the appointment of a new manager."

Former Celtic and Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill, who won 64 caps for Northern Ireland, is the favourite to replace Trapattoni.

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