Netherlands 0 - 0 Republic of Ireland
REPORT: WU17 claim impressive point v Netherlands
Ireland had the better of the chances throughout the game but goalkeeper Rachael Kelly, who started her first game of the tournament, made a number of crucial saves in the final five minutes.
In difficult conditions with heavy rain and thunderstorms overhead, Ireland controlled much of the play in the first-half and could have taken the lead in the 23rd minute.
Alannah McEvoy won the ball high up the pitch from a throw and found the 14-year old Jessica Ziu in space and her shot went narrowly past the right-hand post.
Ireland continued to put the Group B winners under pressure and had one of their best chances just after the half-hour. From the left-sided corner, the ball dropped for Galway WFC defender Sadhbh Doyle who turned and fired towards goal, but her shot was well saved.
Dave Bell’s side continued to put the Netherlands under pressure as the pacey Carla McManus latched onto a long ball to run towards goal, but her goal-bound effort was well blocked in the 48th minute.
Despite deserving all three points, Ireland had to defend in the final 10 minutes and Shelbourne Ladies goalkeeper Rachael Kelly made a series of impressive saves to earn her side a point.
The WU17 squad will now travel home tomorrow having finished bottom of Group B, but should be proud of their performances having been the youngest team at the tournament.
WU17 Head Coach Dave Bell said: “I’m delighted for the players. They’ve been brilliant throughout the whole tournament and really improved so for them to earn a point against the group winners is great.
“We had a number of chances which could have seen us win the game but in the end, I think we should be happy with the point and Rachael (Kelly) has done brilliantly in goal to make sure we kept that clean sheet.
“It is a really young group, the youngest at the tournament, so the players will take on this experience and continue to improve. It’s been great exposure for the players and a major step on their international football journey.”
Republic of Ireland WU17 side v Netherlands: 16 Rachael Kelly, 3 Lauryn Grier, 5 Sadhbh Doyle, 6 Tyler Toland, 8 Tiegan Ruddy (C), 9 Alannah McEvoy, 10 Megan Mackey, 11 Heather Payne, 12 Doireann Fahey, 15 Carla McManus (17 Isibeal Atkinson 68’), 18 Jessica Ziu.
WU17: Payne determined to end Championships on a high
Dave Bell’s squad will be heading home after the final Group B fixture having suffered two defeats against Norway and England in their first two matches.
A late header saw Ireland edged out against Norway to send the squad home but Payne believes the squad should take great confidence that they’re one of the top eight teams in Europe and are playing against the best at the Championships.
Payne said: “I’ve really enjoyed it and it’s been a great experience for us to be playing at a major tournament.
“We’ve done really well and the Norway game was really frustrating as we definitely deserved something out of the game because we played really well.
“We’re amongst the top eight teams in Europe to be at the tournament and we should definitely remember that because to reach these finals is a great achievement in itself.”
Peamount United attacker Payne looks set to start against the Netherlands, a game which will be her final game at Under 17s level having had some great moments, including a 30-yard free-kick winner against Hungary in the Elite Round.
With Ireland determined to claim victory before heading home, Payne is confident the team can produce a performance and get a result at the European Championships.
She continued: “It’s really disappointing to already be out of the competition ahead of the final game but that doesn’t change the desire we have to win.
“We want to represent ourselves in the right way and do well for the country. We’ve definitely improved since the tournament began so I’m really confident we can get a result.”
Ahead of the final game, the families of the players were invited to the team hotel on Saturday evening for the players’ first caps presentation and Payne said it was a great night for the players.
She added: “It was a really enjoyable experience to get my first cap for my country and to have my family there to witness it was great for me and all the players.”
Republic of Ireland WU17 Squad
Goalkeepers: Erica Turner (UCD Waves), Rachael Kelly (Shelbourne LFC)
Defenders: Isibeal Atkinson (Enniskerry), Doireann Fahey (Peamount United), Sadhbh Doyle (Galway WFC), Eabha O'Mahony (Lakewood), Roisin McGovern (Enniskerry), Lauryn Grier (Kentstown Rovers)
Midfielders: Tyler Toland (Maiden City), Megan Mackey (Chelsea LFC), Tiegan Ruddy (Shelbourne LFC), Aisling Spillane (Peamount United), Orla Casey (Wexford Youths), Jessica Ziu (Shelbourne LFC), Phoebe Warner (West Bromwich Albion)
Forwards: Alannah McEvoy (Enniskerry), Carla McManus (Peamount United), Heather Payne (Peamount United)
Republic of Ireland WU17s tournament fixture schedule
2 May, 2017: Republic of Ireland 0-5 England, KO 11.00, Na Litavce, Pribram (CZE)
5 May, 2017: Republic of Ireland 0-1 Norway, KO 11.00, Doosan Arena, Plzen (CZE)
8 May 2017 - Netherlands v Republic of Ireland, KO 14.00, Domazlice Stadium, Domazlice (CZE)
- 16 Aukje Van Seijst (G)
- 2 Lynn Wilms
- 4 Lisa Doorn
- 7 Romée Leuchter
- 9 Kerstin Casparij
- 11 Jill Baijings
- 14 Lotte Van Veldhoven
Republic of Ireland
- Referee Cristina Trandafir
- Assistant Referees Petra Bombek
- UEFA Delegate Aleksandra Pejkovska
- Assistant Referee Two Anastassiya Akimova
- Fourth Official Hannelore Onsea
- Referee Observer Ausra Kance
- Republic of Ireland
Shots on Target
Shots off Target
Republic of Ireland
10Shots on Goal1
Minute by Minute Commentary