U21s face Italy in European Championship qualifier…13/10/2020

Our U21 side suffered bitter disappointment in Pisa this Tuesday afternoon when they went down to a two nil defeat by hosts Italy in their European Championship qualifier. The first half was fairly even until we conceded the opening goal just a couple of minutes before the half-time break. We then conceded the second goal on 62 minutes and an already difficult position became even more challenging. We have now been superseded at the summit by Italy on goal difference but they also have a match in hand. Realistically we are now in a battle for second place with our next opponents Iceland and Sweden.

Gavin Bazunu; Lee O’Connor, Nathan Collins, Conor Masterson(C), Darragh Leahy; Conor Coventry, Jack Taylor; Will Smallbone, Connor Ronan, Zack Elbouzedi; Michael Obafemi
Jonathan Afolabi for Obafemi 74′
Danny Grant for Ronan 75′
Daniel Mandroiu for Taylor 75′

                      P  W  D  L   F  A  G/D  Pts
Italy                 7  5  1  1  17  3  14   16
Republic of Ireland   8  5  1  2  12  5   7   16
Sweden                8  5  0  2  27  8  19   15
Iceland               7  5  0  2  13  9   4   15
Luxembourg            8  1  0  7   2 23 -21    3
Armenia               8  1  0  7   4 27 -23    3


Our U21 side, under the guidance of new Head Coach Jim Crawford, his first match in command, face top seeds Italy in a crucial European Championship qualifier in the Garibaldi Arena, Pisa at 4pm (Irish time) on Tuesday afternoon. Ireland currently top Group One, three points clear of Italy who have a match in hand. Crawford will select his team from a squad without seven stellar performers, six of whom, Aaron Connolly, Adam Idah, Caoimhin Kelleher, Jason Knight, Jayson Molumby and Dara O’Shea are with the senior squad while the injured Troy Parrott would almost certainly be in the senior ranks were he available.

Gavin Bazunu(Rochdale-Loan) Ed McGinty(Sligo Rovers)

Defenders: Nathan Collins(Stoke City), Darragh Leahy(Dundalk), Conor Masterson(QPR), Conor McCarthy(St Mirren), Danny McNamara(St Johnstone-Loan), Lee O’Connor(Tranmere Rovers-Loan), Thomas O’Connor(Gillingham-Loan), Liam Scales(Shamrock Rovers)
Midfielders: Conor Coventry(West Ham United), Will Ferry(Southampton), Daniel Mandroiu(Bohemian), Connor Ronan(Grasshopper Zurich-Loan), Will Smallbone(Southampton), Jack Taylor(Peterborough United)
Attackers: Jonathan Afolabi(Dundee-Loan), Zachery Elbouzedi(Lincoln City), Danny Grant(Bohemian), Joshua Kayode(Carlisle United-Loan), Michael Obafemi (Southampton)