Ireland to begin Centenary Shield campaign this week
The Welsh side had a disappointing outing against the English Independent Schools FA last week, going down 4-0 in their annual meet. Marc Lloyd Williams’ side will be looking to bounce back from that encounter with a sterling performance at home in the Rock Stadium.
Last season saw late drama unfold in Whitehall as the Republic of Ireland snatched an injury time winner from the penalty spot against Wales to open their campaign on a positive note, recording a controversial 2-1 win that evening.
Neil Farrugia of St. Andrew’s College, Blackrock had given the home side an interval lead when he ran on to a clever through pass from Carrigaline CS scholar Alec Byrne. However this was cancelled out when Wales resumed after the break in attacking mode and substitute Conor Harwood (Coleg Cambria) was only on the pitch two minutes when he pulled them level.
Carn Thomas was involved in the dramatic final minutes of injury time when he fouled Athlone CC star Conor Layng as the Irish player was attempting to fire in a close range effort.
Referee Clarke awarded the penalty with Thomas receiving his marching orders.
Clonkeen College man, Seán McDonald, a second half substitute stepped up and coolly beat Roberts to claim all three points for Paddy O’Reilly’s side and join Farrugia his UCD U19s team mate on the score sheet.
Wales will be looking for redemption this time out! Goal-scorer Conor Harwood, Keane Royall and Harri Hughes will return for the Welsh this season. The trio will be crucial players for the Dragons and one’s to watch out for.
The Republic of Ireland have enjoyed the upper hand in most of their encounters with their counterparts over the years, winning all but three of their previous 17 outings. They drew 2-2 in Killarney in 2011 and again on the same score-line in 2012 when the Irish travelled to Carmarthern.
Wales have a point to prove this season and their preparations have gone exceptionally well under the watchful eye of ex-professional footballer Marc Lloyd Williams. It should make for an incredible opening game of the season.
Following the Welsh game, the Irish will be out again in a month’s time as they make the journey to Luton to take on England on March 16. Their penultimate fixture will see them at home to Northern Ireland on March 29 as Monaghan United FC plays host. The Irish will entertain Scotland in their final game of the season when they face the tartan army on April 12 in Home Farm FC, Whitehall.
Republic of Ireland Select: Daniel Houghton & Kieran Farren (Carndonagh Community School), Adam O’Connor (St. Clare’s College, Ballyjamesduff), James Carroll (St. Oliver’s Community College, Drogheda), Luke McNicholas (Balla Secondary School), Darryl Walsh (St. Declan’s Community College), Ronan Manning & Adam Rooney (Yeats College, Galway), Liam Kerrigan (St. Attracta’s CS, Tubbercurry), Cian Lee (Boyne Community School), Peter Adigun (Riversdale Community College), Ali Regbha (Chanel College, Coolock), Jack Ryan(Templeogue College), Jake Walker (St. Kevin’s Community College, Clondalkin) Lido Lofeta (Balbriggan Community College), Rory Doyle (St. Francis College, Rochestown), Cian Murphy (Coláiste Dun Iascaigh, Cahir), Adam Conway (De La Salle College, Waterford)
Head Coach William O’Connor (Balbriggan Community College)
Coach John McShane (Dublin Oak Academy, Bray)
GK Coach Conor Foley (Athlone Community College)
Performance Analyst Ollie Horgan (St. Eunan’s College, Letterkenny)
Kit Manager Paul Masterson
Physio Mickey McGlynn
Doctor Aiden O’Colmain
2018 Centenary Shield Fixtures List
February 15 Wales vs Republic of Ireland The Rock, Cefn Druids FC (7pm)
March 9 Scotland vs Northern Ireland Greenock Morton FC (7pm)
March 15 Northern Ireland vs Wales Belfast (2pm)
March 16 England vs Republic of Ireland Kenilworth Stadium, Luton Town FC (7pm)
March 23 England vs Scotland Bootham Crescent, York City FC (7pm)
March 29 Republic of Ireland vs Northern Ireland Monaghan United FC (2pm)
March 29 Wales vs England Cardiff Metropolitan University FC (7pm)
April 6 Northern Ireland vs England Belfast (7pm)
April 12 Republic of Ireland vs Scotland Home Farm FC (2pm)
April 19 Scotland vs Wales Queen of the South FC (7pm)