News Round-up Jan Feb 2018. Our Under 21 side will continue their 2019 European Championship Qualifying campaign on the 27th March 2018 when Azerbaijan will be the visitors to Tallaght Stadium. There is then a lengthy break before the September 2018 double header away to Kosova on Friday the 7th September and home to Germany on Tuesday the 11th September. We will complete our qualifying campaign with an away double header the following month, travelling to Israel on Thursday the 11th October followed by a visit to Germany on Tuesday the 16th October 2018.
In preparation for the Elite Stage of the 2018 European Championship, our squad travelled to Spain where they took on Romania in a double header played on Tuesday the 13th and Friday the 16th February 2018. An early goal from captain Dara O’Shea, who is on loan at Hereford United from West Bromwich Albion, secured a one nil victory in the opening contest while a brace from Wexford FC striker Aaron Dobbs underpinned a two one success in the second encounter. Head Coach Tom Mohan is shortly set to announce his squad for the European Championship qualifiers which are set to commence in Portugal on the 21st March 2018, where Kosova and Slovakia together with the hosts will form the opposition, with just the group winners qualifying for the July finals.
Our U18 non-competitive side will host Wales in two friendly encounters on Tuesday the 20th and Thursday the 22nd February with a second double header against Romania set for Sunday the 25th and Tuesday the 27th March 2018.
Our U17 side took on Turkey in a double header played in Galway on Tuesday the 13th and Thursday the 15th February 2018. A late equaliser from Tottenham Hotspur striker Troy Parrot earned a one all draw in the opening encounter played in Eamonn Deacy Park while the second contest finished scoreless at Fahy’s Field, home of Mervue United. Head Coach Colin O’Brien will shortly confirm his squad for the Elite Stage of the 2018 European Championship which is set to commence in Poland on Wednesday the 21st March, with Georgia and Macedonia completing the group quartet.
Our senior women travelled to face Portugal in a friendly double header where they went down to an opening one nil defeat on the 18th January before securing a three one success in the second contest on the 21st January 2018. Slovakia and Holland provide the opposition in two home World Cup qualifiers set for the 6th and 10th April 2018 in Tallaght Stadium.
Our U19 Women travelled to Portugal where they went down to a three one defeat by the hosts on the 17th January in the opening contest of an Invitation Triangular Tournament. There followed another three one reversal in the second contest against England on the 19th January. We then faced the hosts again two days later and incurred another three one defeat.
Our U17 Women met Denmark in two friendly contests played in the AUL Complex where we went down to a two nil defeat on Monday the 5th February and a two one defeat on Thursday the 8th February 2018.
The draw for the Elite Stage of the 2018 European Championship sees Ireland drawn in Group Seven alongside Azerbaijan, Iceland and Germany, who will host the mini-tournament from the 22nd to the 28th March 2018. We will meet Iceland on Thursday the 22nd followed by Azerbaijan on Sunday the 25th and hosts Germany on Wednesday the 28th.
The draw for the preliminary stage of the 2019 Championship has also been made and we will contest Group Seven with Albania, Wales and mini-tournament hosts Serbia from the 22nd to the 28th October 2018.
Our Schools International side kicked-off their Centenary Shield challenge with a two one away victory over Wales at Cefn Druids FC on Thursday the 15th February 2018. We will next travel to meet England at 7pm on Friday the 16th March at Kenilworth Road, home of Luton Town FC, before hosting Northern Ireland on Thursday the 29th March 2018. The final contest at home to Scotland is set for Thursday the 12th April 2018.
FAI Presidents Cup
The FAI Presidents Cup again spearheaded the 2018 domestic season and took place in Oriel Park on Sunday the 11th February 2018 where double winners Cork City recovered from a two goal deficit to defeat dual runners-up Dundalk by fouir goals to two.
FAI Airtricity League
The 2018 Airtricity League season kicked-off on Friday the 16th February 2018 with defending champions Cork City securing a three two success at St Patrick’s Athletic while dual runners-up Dundalk were held to a scoreless draw by visitors Bray Wanderers. Dublin rivals Bohemian and Shamrock Rovers met in Dalymount Park with RTE 2 bringing live coverage of the contest which saw the ‘Gypsies’ recover from a one nil half time deficit to secure a three one victory. Newly promoted Waterford also came from behind to secure a two one success over visitors Derry City at the RSC. The opening match series was completed on Saturday evening with visitors Limerick scoring the only goal to defeat Sligo Rovers in the Showgrounds.