Long helps Ireland see off Italy to go through

By SFC Media time Wed 22 Jun Club

Southampton's Shane Long played his part as Republic of Ireland beat Graziano Pellè's Italy 1-0 to progress to the knockout stages of UEFA EURO 2016.

The win was enough for Martin O'Neill's men to qualify for the last 16 of the competition, as they finished third in Group E with four points to progress as one of the best third-placed teams.

The only goal of the game came five minutes from time, as Robbie Brady headed home from close range to seal a narrow, but crucial, victory.

Fellow Saints striker Pellè was rested by the Italians, who had already assured themselves of top spot in the group thanks to their previous wins against Belgium and Sweden.

Pellè will hope to be recalled for the Azzurri's clash with Spain in the last 16 of the competition, while Long and Ireland will now take on hosts France.

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