Ireland’s soccer team was one of 103 teams to participate in the qualifying stages of the 1990 FIFA World Cup Competition. By the time the tournament began on June 8th 1990 Ireland had qualified to play in the competition for the first time in history.
Two years previously Ireland under the management of Jack Charlton had qualified for Euro 88. In that tournament Ireland, who had beaten England, drawn with the Soviet Union, were defeated by the Netherlands. They did not progress beyond the group stages.
Italy played host to the 1990 FIFA World Cup Competition. The opening game of the competition, usually referred to as ‘Italia 90’, for Ireland was against England. The game was played in Cagliari on the island of Sardinia. The game finished in a one-all draw. In the second game in the group stage Ireland and Egypt played a nil-nil draw in Palermo on the Island of Sicily. The final game of the group stages, which again was played in Palermo, ended in a one-all draw with the Netherlands.
Ireland qualified from their group in second place and entered the knock-out stage where they faced Romania. The game against Romania, which was played in Genoa on June 25th, ended in a scoreless draw. In the ensuing penalty shoot-out Ireland won 5-4 and were through the quarter-finals of the World Cup for the first time.
Ireland faced the hosts Italy in the quarter-finals at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome on June 30th. Italy were victorious courtesy of a goal from Salvatore Schillaci, usually referred to by his nickname Totò. Despite the defeat, Italia 90 is Ireland’s most successful tournament to date.
Italy defeated Ireland in the quarter-finals of the World Cup in the year 1990 On This Day.
CIAO Mascota de Italia 90 by MEDIODESCOCIDO on 2014-05-27 10:21:43
Photo by Alan O’Rourke