Ireland U18: Belgium win opening game of Invitational Tournament
Belgium went into a two-goal lead before half-time, with goals courtesy of Ibrahim Kargbo and Alan Mayanga and before Shawn Adewoye scored Belgium's third goal during the second half.
Over a five-day training camp, Ireland will also line out against Netherlands and Czech Republic near Murcia, in the Pinatar Arena.
Republic of Ireland U18s manager Jim Crawford said: "It was a learning opportunity for the players. They now know that if they will be playing competitive international football at Under 19 level, the quality of opposition in the elite phases. It's a great learning tool for the players going into the Under 19s.
"I thought we were very good in the second-half. We created several chances. Our build-up play was good. We were looking a lot more composed. Looking ahead to the next two games, we will be looking to improve on this performance.
"It's been a new experience for some of the players playing international football. This tournament gives Under 19 manager Tom Mohan a chance to see how the players are developing."
Ireland return to action for their second game of the tournament on Saturday evening against Netherlands. Kick-off is at 18:00 local time (17:00 Irish time).
Republic of Ireland: Brian Maher; Ciaran Brennan, Joseph Redmond, Kevin Healy, Kameron Ledwidge; Rowan Roache (William Smallbone 78), Conor Coventry; Gavin Kilkenny, Matthew Shiels (Richard O’Farrell 46), William Ferry; Adam Idah.
Republic of Ireland v Netherlands. 18:00 local time. November 11, Pinatar Arena, Murcia, Spain
Republic of Ireland v Czech Republic. 17:00 local time. November 13, Pinatar Arena, Murcia, Spain
Photo Credit: Pinatar Arena.