The draw for the Euro 2012 qualifiers could have been way worse from Ireland’s point of view, with nothing to fear (but fear itself) from Russia and the rest of Group B.

UEFA president Michel Platini wanted Ireland and France to meet again, but mercifully we were spared that circus. However, in the absence of any glamour games, the FAI’s only concern will be trying to shift seats for the likes of Macedonia, Slovakia, Armenia and Andorra, with John Delaney optimistically wearing his salesman’s hat at Monday night’s Junior League meeting in Waterford. Even the Aviva Stadium’s smaller 50,000 capacity might be ambitious looking at that lot.