Five great Irish soccer songs
Never mind the publicans, the Revenue Commissioners or even Trap and the players, the real winners last night were the songwriters of Ireland.
As we speak, thousands of budding Christy Moores are sitting down attempting to pen the song that we will all be belting out at three in the morning outside chippers next summer.
But the competition will be stiff. Things are so bad here, every act from Crystal Swing to Van Morrison will probably try to make a few quid off the back of the lads so expect to be deluged in the good, the bad and the hilariously awful over the next eight months. It also might be Andy Reid's best chance of being involved next summer.
But as a taster, and perhaps a lesson to any hopefuls out there, here are five previous efforts to get them in the mood.
1. Joxer goes to Stuttgart/Christy Moore
One of the originals and one of the best. Lyrically stupendous (The dream turned into a nightmare/Joxer stuck the head on Jack/who wanted to bring Johnny Giles/ and Eamon Dunphy back) it is of a different time, pre-Ryanair, when Ireland’s trip to Euro 88 in Germany was really a trip into the unknown. We have waited 24 years since to return to a European Championships so surely Christy will relaunch Joxer for this trip.
This clip is a performance of the song before the World Cup quarter-final with Italy in 1990 which also includes a lovely jumper on Bill O’Herlihy and some footage of the madness in the pubs.
2. Put ‘Em Under Pressure/ Ireland Team Official Song 1990
England may have had New Order involved for their 1990 World Cup song but we had Horslips so we win. An all-time classic that the entire country knows every single word to, even the spoken words of wisdom from Jack Charlton, it’s place in the hearts of the Irish people is assured.
Also any video with Mick McCarthy heading a ball while playing the drums has to be good right?
3. The Game/The Memories
The name or the band won’t ring many bells but if we tell you it's the ‘We Didn’t Start The Fire’ song then you will be up to speed. Billy Joel may be a legend, but the lads here have improved his song with the best lyrics of any Irish football song, even Joxer. It has everything, including mention of Kevin Moran playing with the Dubs.
But the best bit is easily 'Maradona/Hand of God/Brady should be in the squad'. We imagine when that was penned, the lads from Glasnevin did a few laps around the garage. Genius personified.
4. Give It A Lash Jack/Liam Harrison and the GOAL celebrities
We always thought this was a good tune but Bono, yes Lord Bono of U2, himself declared this ‘the greatest Irish song ever written’, at least, that is what Jim Sheridan told Ryan Tubridy anyway. Whatever you might think of the wee man, he knows a good song when he hears one so we bow to his superior knowledge here.
5. Here Come The Good Times/ Irish Team Official Song 2002
If you are wondering why all the songs so far are from the early days of Irish success it’s because the latter stuff was fairly brutal. The best of the rest is this ‘effort’ from 2002 which comes with a large dollop of Nicky Byrne, yes Westlife’s Nicky Byrne, covering the A-House tune of the same name. Apologies for this clip too which features a fair bit of Brian McFadden.
We are already searching for the next great song but they will have to do something great to beat these.