Italy have already confirmed their position at the top of group E and they responded by making eight changes to their starting line-up. Ireland tried taking advantage and was the first off the blocks and had multiple chances to go ahead. Wes Hoolahan seemed to have fluffed his chance at winning the game but redeemed almost immediately by providing an inch-perfect cross for Brady to seal a last-16 spot.
The win puts Ireland in a last-16 encounter with hosts France which should be an exciting affair. But a mouthwatering clash awaits Italy as double defending Champions Spain are next up in the round of 16.
Italy vs Republic of Ireland - Player of the game
Italy are going to be a tough nut to crack at the back and so the chances are going to be few for the Irish. When Hoolahan missed his easy chance by shooting straight to the goal keeper, it looked like the only chance for them. But Hoolahan immediately atoned for his mistake by turning provider for Brady’s winning goal. A surreal experience for both but Hoolahan needs a pat for keeping his composure.