Centre back Diane Caldwell‘s goal on the stroke of half-time gave Ireland three fully deserved points from this Thursday evening’s European Championship qualifier against Greece in Tallaght Stadium. The goal came following a corner delivered by skipper Katie McCabe which was headed into the six yard box by Caldwell‘s fellow centre back Louise Quinn. Ireland started brightly and dominated play throughout the first half and should perhaps have scored earlier. The second half was rather more fragmented but save for the tension prevailing in the final few minutes Ireland remined in control. Clearly a second goal would have provided a greater degree of comfort, but the inability to find the net on a more consistent basis remains a concern. My player of the match was Denise O’Sullivan who really looked a class apart while Ruesha Littlejohn received the vote of the sponsors.
Team: Marie Hourihan; Harriet Scott, Diane Caldwell, Louise Quinn, Aine O’Gorman; Heather Payne, Niamh Fahey, Denise O’Sullivan, Katie McCabe(C); Ruesha Littlejohn, Riannea Jarrett
Julie-Ann Russell for Payne 63′
Amber Barrett for Jarrett 72′
Clare Shine for Littlejohn 86′
P W D L F A G/D Pts
Germany 4 4 0 0 31 0 31 12
Ireland 4 3 1 0 7 3 4 10
Greece 4 1 1 2 5 7 -2 4
Montenegro 3 0 0 3 0 16 -16 0
Ukraine 3 0 0 3 2 19 -17 0
Our senior international women face two crucial UEFA EURO 2021 Qualifiers this and next week. We face Greece in Tallaght Stadium at 7.15pm on Thursday evening before travelling to Montenegro to take on our hosts in Budva on Wednesday the 11th March 2020.
Head Coach Vera Pauw will be without the injured quartet of Megan Campbell, Megan Connolly, Keeva Keenan and Jessica Ziu. New to the squad is American born striker Kyra Carusa while the evergreen Aine O’Gorman, already capped 100 times, returns to the fold.
Goalkeepers: Courtney Brosnan(West Ham United), Marie Hourihan(SC Braga), Grace Moloney(Reading), Niamh Reid Burke(Peamount United)
Defenders: Diane Caldwell(SC Sand), Jamie Finn(Shelbourne), Chloe Mustaki(Charlton Athletic), Aine O’Gorman(Peamount United), Claire O’Riordan(MSV Duisberg), Louise Quinn(Arsenal), Harriet Scott(Birmingham City), Claire Walsh(Peamount United)
Midfielders: Niamh Fahey(Liverpool), Niamh Farrelly(Peamount United), Ruesha Littlejohn(West Ham United), Hayley Nolan(University of Hartford), Denise O’Sullivan(North Carolina Courage), Julie-Ann Russell(Sydney University)
Forwards: Amber Barrett(FC Koln), Kyra Carusa(HB Koge), Rianna Jarrett(Brighton & Hove Albion), Leanne Kiernan(West Ham United), Katie McCabe(Arsenal), Heather Payne(Florida State University), Clare Shine(Glasgow City)