Ireland assistant manager Marco Tardelli praised his side's determination and tactical solidity after beating Italy.
“We were humble and it's true we expect a lot from our players, but they always step up. It may not have been a wonderful performance, but Ireland played with heart,” he said of the 2-0 friendly victory in Liege.
“We knew it was going to be difficult for us, but also for Italy, as they always want to give their all on the field in every occasion.
“Both our centre-backs have had injury problems, but did a great job and will give us many satisfying moments in future.”
Tardelli is a former Under-21 Italy boss and commented on Cesare Prandelli's outfit in this interview with RAI Sport.
“They are a very young side who played good football tonight, while Ireland set up a strong dam to block them off, especially in midfield. I think the Azzurri can step up a gear just with a little more experience.”