Richie Sadlier believes that the final scoreline in the Republic of Ireland's 4-1 win over Andorra disguised serious issues around the team's performance.
Stephen Kenny's side struggled to create anything against their lowly-ranked hosts in Andorra la Vella in the opening half and even trailed early in the second period after Marc Vales was allowed a free header from a free-kick.
"Overall it's a win, which is what we expected, but loads and loads of concerning aspects to the performance," said the RTÉ analyst. "A lot of it was really worrying.
"Their goal was terrible. It's baffling how a team can defend a set-piece as badly as that, particularly a team that have spent a week together training.
"Stephen said beforehand 'We've had more time with them than ever before at training camp’ and you’re thinking 'What did you do?’. Was it just generic training or did you actually plot a path here that you want to get all the players to go along with?
"It wasn’t obvious for a long long time. The worrying period lasted longer than the six minutes we were a goal down. There was a 45-minute worrying period in the first half and then the second half started off really poorly."
Sadlier suggested fitness was ultimately the decisive factor in Kenny recording a first victory as Ireland boss after 11 false dawns.
"The fatigue in the Andorra team was a big factor in us being able to exert our authority over them in the second half," said Sadlier.
"When they got knackered - a group of players split between the Andorran League and Spanish fourth division - we started looking like a team, but that's not enough to be too excited about.
"And they had two or three howlers from goalkeepers for the goals we scored.
"There are some high points on a personal level: (Daryl) Horgan, (Troy) Parrott and (Jason) Knight all getting their first goals. (Jamie) McGrath making his debut.
"But you can't read too much into a win against Andorra because of their quality."
"When they got knackered - a group of players split between the Andorran League and Spanish fourth division - we started looking like a team, but that's not enough to be too excited about." - Richie Sadlier and Karen Duggan not getting carried away by Ireland's 4-1 win #ANDIRL pic.twitter.com/dxQ8CxoIpd— RTÉ Soccer (@RTEsoccer) June 3, 2021
Karen Duggan said it should not have taken going behind in the 52nd minute and the spectre of a shock defeat for the players to raise the tempo.
"Unfortunately, I do think that was the kick that they needed," said the former Ireland international.
"We started to see (James) McClean and Parrott taking people on and before that we had just been doing slow passing back and forth.
"But then it felt like there was a sense of urgency and it would have been too embarrassing to continue on the way that they had been.
"It was concerning that it took something like to kick us into gear given that’s what we should have been doing from the first minute.
"But for us to progress maybe we have to come up for air out of the the negativity that's been around the team for so long.
"Maybe the team just needs to take this little positive and try to build on it. We had to start somewhere. This is the lowest ebb it could have started at but it's a start."