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Under-19s lose season opener

Serbia under-19  3-0 Republic of Ireland under-19

 

The Republic of Ireland Under-19s lost to a powerful Serbia in Tuesday's first instalment of this week's double-header friendly in Belgrade.

 

Ireland manager Paul Doolin is using the pair of games to look at his options for the first phase of UEFA qualifiers taking place in Bulgaria from 6-11 October where they will meet Russia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and hosts Bulgaria.

 

 

Serbia got off to a great start when Lazar Markovic opened the scoring on six minutes with a shot from an acute angle which beat Portsmouth goalkeeper Matthew Gledhill.

 

The home side's dominance translated into a second goal with 38 minutes played as Ivan Dragicevic's shot deflected in off Ireland defender Michael Keane.

 

Nikola Ninkovic added a third for Serbia twelve minutes after the break and, although they lost Markovic to a red card shortly after, Ireland were unable to fashion a comeback.

 

Ireland face the Serbs again on Thursday before gearing up for the qualifiers.

 

Rep of Ireland: Gledhill (Portsmouth); Rafferty (Liverpool), Keane (Manchester United), McGinty (Manchester United), S. Kavanagh (Belvedere); George (Celtic), Webb (Arsenal), Byrne (Leicester City), McEvoy (Tottenham Hotspur); McGuinness (Bray Wanderers), Murphy (Reading)

Subs: Byrne (Notts Forest) for Rafferty, Ryan Markey (Notts Forest) for Murphy, O' Brien (Millwall) for McGuinness (all 46 mins), Garmston (West Brom) for Kavanagh (64 mins), Dillon (Derby) for Webb (64 mins), G. Smith (Southend United) for McEvoy (75 mins)

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