ELEVEN months on from World Cup heartache against the Republic of Ireland, Wales got their revenge with a thumping victory over Martin O’Neill’s men at the Cardiff City Stadium.

Eleven years on from his final international match as a player, Ryan Giggs’ first home match as manager of his country saw Wales produce their best performance since Euro 2016.

First-half goals from Tom Lawrence, Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey and a fourth after the break from Connor Roberts sealed a first win over Ireland since 1992 and gave Wales the perfect start to their UEFA Nations League campaign.

Giggs picked a young team full of attacking intent and he was rewarded with a breathtaking display, which left the visitors reeling.

Swansea City youngster Roberts impressed at right-back as Chris Gunter’s run of 63 consecutive starts for his country came to an end.

And 17-year-old Ethan Ampadu showed just why he’s one of the hottest talents in British football with an incredibly mature performance in central midfield.

But the old guard played their part as well and it was Joe Allen, who was bullied off the pitch inside 40 minutes on that painful night last October, who set up the first goal with a stunning pass for Lawrence in the sixth minute.

The Stoke City midfielder split the Irish defence with a perfectly weighted throughball and Lawrence did the rest, smashing his shot beyond a helpless Darren Randolph from eight yards out.

That was the first time Wales had scored against the Republic since a Jason Koumas penalty in November 2007.

It was a goal good enough to win any game but the second on 18 minutes was even better.

Ben Davies picked out Bale with a brilliant 50-yard diagonal pass and the Real Madrid man controlled it on his chest before turning inside Ciaran Clarke and curling an unstoppable shot into the top corner from the edge of the area.

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Bournemouth winger David Brooks and Lawrence then went close before Roberts headed inches over from a tempting Davies cross.

Callum Robinson curled a shot just over at the other end but there was no stopping Giggs’ men and they wrapped up the victory before half-time.

Ampadu won the ball in midfield and ran 30 yards before releasing Ramsey, who confidently slotted his shot inside the post to put Wales in dreamland.

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They would have expected a response from an out-of-sorts Irish team after the break but it never really materialised.

Robinson headed over from a Seamus Coleman cross on 55 minutes but that only stung the home side into action again and they went straight down the other end to add a fourth goal.

Ramsey, Lawrence and Bale combined down the left flank before Bale picked out Roberts on the edge of the area and the defender showed his attacking prowess with a superb half volley that beat Randolph from 20 yards out.

Bale nearly curled in a fifth as Wales threatened to really humiliate the visitors but a mistake by Ramsey allowed them a consolation goal on 66 minutes.

The Arsenal man seemed to slip and was robbed by Ireland substitute Shaun Williams, who then calmly lifted the ball over Wayne Hennessey.

But that wasn’t enough to dampen Welsh spirits and Giggs’ team will be bursting with confidence as they travel to Denmark this weekend.

News broke before kick-off that the Danish players had agreed a temporary deal with their football association so Wales will take on a full-strength team rather than assorted bakers and candlestick-makers in Aarhus on Sunday evening.

On this form they will be confident of beating anyone.

Wales: Hennessey; C Roberts, Williams, Mepham, Davies (Dummett, 81); Ampadu (Smith, 67), Allen; Brooks, Ramsey, Lawrence; Bale (T Roberts, 75)

Subs not used: Ward, Davies, Gunter, Chester, King, Vokes, Ledley, Wilson, Lockyer

Referee: Clement Turpin (France)

Attendance: 25,657

Argus star man: Ampadu