U19s commence Elite Stage qualifiers…20/03/2019

Head Coach Tom Mohan saw his Ireland U19 side commence their European Championship Elite Qualifying Stage challenge with an emphatic five nil victory over Romania at the Kuban Stadium, Krasnodar in Russia this Wednesday morning. Ireland got off to an excellent start with early goals from Southampton duo Jonathan Afolabi and Will Smallbone in the 7th and 11th minutes respectively, putting them in command at half-time. Second half goals from both Afolabi and Smallbone again, together with an own goal, cemented an excellent opening performance. With four players from the qualifying stage, Conor Coventry, Adam Idah, Lee O’Connor and Troy Parrott selected in the U21 squad and injury ruling out Nathan Collins and the still eligible Michael Obafemi, although the latter was likely to have been selected in the senior squad, the portents look very promising.
Later in the afternoon, mini-tournament hosts Russia played out a scoreless draw with Azerbaijan.   

Starting Eleven:
1. Brian Maher (St Patrick’s Athletic)
2. Andy Lyons (Bohemian)
3. Kameron Ledwidge (Southampton)
4. Jack James (Luton Town)
5. Oisin McEntee (Newcastle United)
6. Aaron Bolger (Shamrock Rovers)[C]
7. Ali Reghba (Bohemian)

8. Jason Knight (Derby County)
9. Jonathan Afolabi (Southampton)
10. Will Smallbone (Southampton)
11. Will Ferry (Southampton)
14.Luca Connell (Bolton Wanderers) for Smallbone 71′
22.Richie O’Farrell (UCD)for Reghba 71′
12.Mark McGuinness (Arsenal) for James 80′
17.Tyriek Wright (Aston Villa) for Ferry 80′
13.Tom Gaston (Bordeaux)for Lyons 84′