Republic of Ireland boss Giovanni Trapattoni insists that their 3-2 defeat at home to Russia is not a massive blow to their Euro 2012 hopes.
Slovakia's surprise loss to Armenia earlier on Friday left the Republic as the
only side in Group B still with a 100 per cent record and knowing victory over Russia would put them in pole position to reach their first major finals in a decade.
But Ireland could not maintain their perfect start as Russia clinched victory at the Aviva Stadium.
Alexander Kerzhakov, Alan Dzagoev and Roman Shirokov had given the visitors a three-goal advantage.
Robbie Keane and Shane Long pulled it back to 3-2 in the closing stages, but they could not find an equaliser.
"At the moment we have three teams the same and we start again the qualification. It is important now we think about our quality and our possibilities," said Trapattoni.
"Russia lost against Slovakia, now Slovakia have lost against Armenia. The qualification is not easy and there's a long way to go. I'm sure we have the same chance.
"It was important psychologically not to lose our mental strength and we finished strongly."