Our senior women suffered another one nil defeat, on this occasion by Belgium, in this evening’s second friendly international played at the King Baudouin Stadium in Brussels. The hosts are FIFA Ranked 17 and presented the difficult challenge to which Ireland Head Coach Vera Pauw wished to expose her squad. The hosts scored the only goal after 14 minutes, one which really should have been prevented, but thereafter for the most part the Irish back three, excellently marshalled by Diane Caldwell, stood firm. Ireland did create a number of scoring opportunities but rather like our senior men, the ability to convert those chances is still a bridge too far. The signs though are promising and we should look to the future with some optimism. Heather Payne worked tirelessly on the right flank and earned the Irish ‘Player of the Match’ nomination.
Team: Courtney Brosnan; Claire O’Riordan, Diane Caldwell, Claire Walsh; Alli Murphy, Ruesha Littlejohn, Megan Connolly, Denise O’Sullivan, Katie McCabe(c); Heather Payne, Kyra Carusa
Aine O’Gorman for Murphy 46′
Emily Whelan for Payne 67′
Ellen Molloy for Carusa 67′
Hayley Nolan for Connolly 74′
Rianna Jarrett for Littlejohn 82′
Louise Quinn for Walsh 82′
Our senior women went down to a one nil defeat by Denmark in this evening’s friendly international played in Tallaght Stadium. The FIFA Ranked 14 visitors were just that bit better, particularly in possession, than Ireland who are ranked at 31 on the FIFA standings but the contest, which was quite competitive, will have proved a very useful exercise for Head Coach Vera Pauw in the development of the team. The greater technical ability of the visitors was quite evident in the first half but Ireland offered a much improved challenge in the second period. The long distance shot from captain Katie McCabe which cannoned off the crossbar was quite a highlight and she came close with another effort from a free kick. Goalkeeper Grace Moloney will be disappointed with the Danish goal conceded after just nine minutes but thereafter she performed very well. The back three of Niamh Fahey, Louise Quinn and Diane Caldwell defended stoutly while midfielder Jamie Finn belied her youthfulness with an excellent performance which earned her the Irish ‘Player of the Match’ accolade.
Team: Grace Moloney; Niamh Fahey, Louise Quinn, Diane Caldwell; Keeva Keenan, Jamie Finn, Megan Connolly, Denise O’Sullivan, Katie McCabe(c); Heather Payne, Amber Barrett
Emily Whelan for Payne 46′
Rianna Jarrett for Barrett 61′
Ellen Molloy for Connolly 61′
Aine O’Gorman for Keenan 72′
Republic of Ireland Women’s Head Coach Vera Pauw has selected a 25 player squad for two friendly internationals this week. Ireland welcome Denmark to Tallaght Stadium at 6.30pm this Thursday evening and will then travel to the King Badouin Stadium in Brussels where they will face Belgium at 6.30pm on Sunday evening.
Goalkeepers: Eve Badana(DLR Waves), Courtney Brosnan(West Ham United), Marie Hourihane(SC Braga), Grace Moloney(Reading)
Defenders: Diane Caldwell(North Carolina Courage), Niamh Fahey(Liverpool), Niamh Farrelly(Glasgow City), Keeva Keenan(Glasgow Celtic), Aine O’Gorman(Peamount United), Claire O’Riordan(MSV Duisberg), Louise Quinn(Fiorentina), Claire Walsh(Peamount United)
Midfielders: Megan Connolly(Brighton & Hove Albion), Jamie Finn(Shelbourne), Ruesha Littlejohn(Birmingham City), Katie McCabe(Arsenal), Ellen Molloy(Wexford WFC), Alli Murphy(London City Lionesses), Hayley Nolan(London City Lionesses), Denise O’Sullivan(North Carolina Courage), Emily Whelan(Shelbourne)
Forwards: Amber Barrett(FC Koln), Kyra Carusa(HB Hoge), Rianna Jarrett(Brighton & Hove Albion), Heather Payne(Florida State University)