Giovanni Trapattoni says the Republic of Ireland can “dream” at Euro 2012, but he is horrified by the latest betting scandal in Italy.
“We ought to be truly proud that we achieved the objective we set ourselves, which was to qualify for the Euros,” Trap told Radio Sportiva from the Irish training camp in Montecatini.
“Of course, now that we’re here it’s clear you get hungrier as you eat, so it’s almost obligatory to dream of the quarter-finals!”
They are in Group C along with Spain, Croatia and the Azzurri in the tournament that begins next month.
“Now we have to start thinking about our first game against Croatia. It won’t be easy and we are all aware of how tough a group we are in. Italy and Spain are superior, while Croatia remain a very important team.”
Trapattoni also replied to criticism from Kevin Foley, as the Wolves man was furious at being dropped for Euro 2012.
“I’m sorry for Kevin because he is an important player, but I had to think only and exclusively about what was best for the team and preferred to bring an extra centre-back with us.”
Italian football is in bad shape going into the tournament, as Domenico Criscito had to be dropped when he was placed under investigation in a betting scandal that also saw Stefano Mauri and Omar Milanetto arrested.
“What is happening leaves a huge lump in everyone’s throat and a bitter taste in the mouth, but I think the magistrates should be allowed to get on with their work and then calmly evaluate the sentences that emerge.”