Republic of Ireland 3 - 0 North Macedonia
Ireland U17: Second-half goals help beat Macedonia
Scoreless at the break, Ireland took the lead through an Adam Idah penalty in the 57th-minute. The goal was the striker's eighth of the campaign so far.
After finding it difficult to break down a resolute Macedonian defence for almost an hour, Ireland scored two more goals in quick succession through Sean Brennan and Tyriek Wright.
Speaking after the match, Head Coach Colin O'Brien was pleased with the team's second-half performance.
"Macedonia didn't concede any goals in the Qualifying Round, and have a very good defence. We were second best for a lot of the first half.
"We improved in the second half and moved the ball quicker. The players responded at half time. Adam's penalty was well taken, while Sean and Tyriek's goals were very good goals too.
"Despite the win, the group is still wide open. The focus is now on the Georgian game."
O'Brien's side are now two points clear at the top of Group 3 after hosts Poland and Georgia drew 2-2. The team return to action on Saturday against Georgia. That game kicks off at 4.30pm Irish time.
Republic of Ireland: Kian Clarke; Max Murphy, Nathan Collins (capt), Kameron Ledwidge, Luca Connell; Callum Thompson (Troy Parrott 52 (Jordan McEneff 74)), Barry Coffey (Adam O'Reilly 70), Jason Knight, Tyreik Wright; Adam Idah, Sean Brennan
Macedonia: Matej Andov; Bozhidar Mitrevski, Vane Tasevski, Suad Jonuzi (Kristijan Trpchevski 73), Georgije Jankulov; Dimitar Todorovski (Arbi Vosha 60), Emil Skoko; Kire Trpchevski (capt), Jeton Dauti, Ersan Hajdari; Suhejlj Muharem (Kushtrim Tairi 41)
Referee: Boris Marhefka (SVK)
Ireland U17: Clarke ready to impress in Poland
Colin O’Brien’s side will feature in Group 3 against Macedonia, Georgia and Poland over the coming week.
The top two from Group 3 will qualify for the 2018 UEFA European Under-17 Championship in England, this May.
Goalkeeper Kian Clarke starred in all three games in the Qualifying Round and is expected to feature heavily in the upcoming days.
Speaking to FAI TV as part of the Club & Country Series, Clarke revealed what playing at international level means to him.
“It’s a dream! Everybody wants to represent their country, no matter what the sport.”
Clarke expects the team to perform well in Poland, starting with Wednesday’s game against Macedonia.
“We’ll always stay positive until the very end. We always have pride in what we do, and passion.
“I’m looking forward to the Elite Phase, and having this opportunity.”
Ireland’s Group 3 campaign kicks off in Głogów against Macedonia, while hosts Poland play Georgia.
2018 UEFA Under-17 Championship Elite Round
Republic of Ireland v Macedonia, Stadion Chrobrego Głogów, Głogów, 5.30pm (4.30pm Irish time)
Republic of Ireland
- 12 Vildan Uka (G)
- 22 Marko Alchevski (G)
- 2 Kristijan Trpchevski
- 3 Gorast Stojmenov
- 15 Vlada Novevski
- 17 Kushtrim Tairi
- 20 Arbi Vosha
- Referee Boris Marhefka
- Assistant Referee Tomáš Vorel
- Assistant Referee Bartosz Heinig
- 4th Referee Sebastian Jarzebak
- Uefa Delegate Igor Satchi
- Referee Observer Igor Satchi
- Republic of Ireland
- North Macedonia
Shots on Target
Shots off Target
Republic of Ireland
- 1Yellow Card(s)0
- 0Red Card(s)0
- 9Shots on Goal2
- 3Shots Wide4
- 0Shot(s) Blocked0
- 12Total Shots6
- 6Fouls Committed10