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first_imgRepublic of Ireland manager Martin O’Neill has reflected on his side’s “torturous” journey to Euro 2016, and has told talkSPORT he is “absolutely delighted” to be joining the other home nations teams in next summer’s finals.After ending their qualifying campaign in third behind world champions Germany and Poland in Group D, Irish hopes rested in the playoffs and they deservedly secured their spot with a 3-1 aggregate victory over Bosnia on Monday.The Aviva Stadium was awash in green and white as the team and their jubilant fans were left to celebrate the end of a long road, which saw them fall just short of automatic progression despite a brilliant win and draw double against the Germans.But the dogged determination former Aston Villa boss O’Neill has installed in this Irish team eventually won the day, as a double from Stoke forward Jonathan Walters ensured the Republic will join their neighbours in France next year.“There can be no doubt about it, we’re delighted to be there,” O’Neill told the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast.“We’re absolutely delighted to be joining Roy Hodgson and England, Michael O’Neill who has done splendidly with Northern Ireland and Chris Coleman who has done great with Wales.“It’s been called torturous route to the finals, and that might just sum it up. It was long journey, we played 12 games including the two play-off matches and there were times over the course of the competition when we thought it might have been a bit of a struggle to qualify.“So for us to be there with them, when it maybe didn’t look possible a couple of months ago, I’m delighted.”Listen to the full interview with Martin O’Neill on the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast above!last_img read more