Republic of Ireland 2 - 0 San Marino | 2022 - Amateur Internationals | 999948326

Amateur Internationals UEFA Regions Cup Qualifying | Albena, Bulgaria
25 Oct 2022 09:00

Republic of Ireland 2 - 0 San Marino

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REPORT | Republic of Ireland 2-0 San Marino

The Republic of Ireland secured an impressive opening victory in their UEFA Regions Cup qualifying campaign with a 2-0 victory over San Marino.
25th Oct 2022

Gerry Davis' side secured the points against an ill-disciplined and nine-men San Marino with second-half strikes through the Rockmount duo of Luke Casey and Eoin Murphy.

It was a combative tie at the Albena Sports Complex but Ireland deserved huge credit for keeping their discipline while their opponents saw their captain and goalkeeper sent off during the second-half.

Ireland started with seven UEFA Regions Cup debutants and after a nervy opening exchange, it was Gerry Davis' side who began to impose themselves on the tie as Eoin Murphy had a shot blocked in the sixth minute.

San Marino had their best opportunity of the match with a quarter-of-an-hour gone, when Elia Ciacci failed to connect as the ball flashed across goal after a teasing cross by Matteo Semprini.

Ireland looked dangerous from set-pieces and Jack McMullan of Home Farm was a constant threat as he ventured forward from his defensive duties. Eoin Hayes of Newmarket Celtic had a shot beaten away by Gentilini in the San Marino goal in the 23rd minute but the stop-start nature of the occasion was counterproductive to any free flowing football.

As the game approached the half-way mark, Luke Casey saw his goal-bound effort blocked away with the game goalless at the break.

San Marino suffered a major blow in the 64th minute when captain Angelini saw his second yellow to reduce the opponents to ten men and they were further reduced in number just four minutes later when goalkeeper Gentilini was dismissed for a poor challenge on Murphy.

As their numerical advantage began to create openings, Ireland finally took the lead with 20 minutes remaining. Stephen Chambers was able to supply a fantastic cross from the right and Luke Casey headed back across goal to score.

Eight minutes later, the points were secure when Eoin Murphy was found clean through in the area and he rounded the keeper to finish and complete the scoring.

Ireland's next match is on Friday, October 28 against Romania knowing that victory will give them a great chance of progression with one game to go.

Republic of Ireland: Brendan O'Connell (GK, C); Lee McColgan, Adam Crowley, Jack McMullan, AJ O'Connor, Jimmy Carr, Eoin Hayes, Stephen Chambers, Luke Casey, Chris Smith, Eoin Murphy. Subs: Sam Burgess (Eoin Hayes 77), Aaron Humphries (Luke Casey 83), Nathan Broderick (Jimmy Carr 84), Deiric Hyland (Eoin Murphy 88).

San Marino: Fabio Gentilini; Michael Parma, Frederico Pescaresi, Luca Angelini, Nicholas Arrigoni, Matteo Semprini, Marseljan Mema, Lorenzo Dormi, Andrea Comuniello, Elia Ciacci, Matteo Gaiani. Subs: Luca Olivieri (Communiello 58), Denis Broccoli (Semprini 67), Matias Colagiovanni (Dormi 82), Armando Senja (Gaiani 84).

Referee: Zaven Hovhannisyan (Armenia)

Preview | Republic of Ireland v San Marino

Republic of Ireland Amateur International side are set to begin their UEFA Regions Cup qualifying campaign tomorrow against San Marino.
24th Oct 2022

Gerry Davis' side flew out to Bulgaria on Friday ahead of the three qualifying matches against San Marino, Romania and hosts Bulgaria.

The opening match will kick-off against San Marino tomorrow at 9am (Irish Time) before the fixture against Romania on Friday, October 28 and the Bulgaria tie on Monday, October 31.

Match Details

Fixture: Republic of Ireland v San Marino
Tournament: UEFA Regions Cup Qualifying
Date: Tuesday, October 25
Kick-off: 9am (Irish Time)
Highlights: FAI TV
Location: Albena, Bulgaria

Match Officials

Referee: Zaven Hovhannisyan (ARM)
Assistant 1: Mesrop Ghazaryan (ARM)
Assistant 2: Georgi Stamboldjiev (BUL)
Fourth Official: Radoslav Gidzhenov (BUL)

What he said - Manager Gerry Davis

"We've had a really good preparation and we've had five games to prepare where the players have performed extremely well so we're looking forward to it.

"We've a lot of new debutants in the squad and we've got a lot of players who will be making their debut at UEFA Regions Cup level so they'll be a lot of excitement to get started.

"We work really hard on out of possession stuff. We don't want to give anything away, we want to be difficult to beat and when we don't have the ball, make the opposition work hard and deny them the space to operate in.

"It will be different next week. International football is difficult against any side really because teams have different cultures and different ways of playing but also, at this level, finding out anything about the opposition can also be very difficult.

"All of the three teams will present different challenges. San Marino have always been difficult to beat and break down, Romania and Bulgaria have always been technically good whenever we've played them so they'll be different challenges during the course of the week."

Watch the full interview with Gerry Davis on FAI TV here

What he said - Defender Lee McColgan

"I can't wait to get out and get started. It feels like the tournament has been something we've been looking forward to for a while and a lot of hard work has been going into it.

"Ever since I've come into the team, we've won every game so far and it's great to have that winning mentality within the team before the tournament.

"It was a shock to get my first call-up. It was sort of a last-minute call-up really so I couldn't wait to get up. A few of my teammates had received call-ups before so it was something I was always aware of.

"Putting on the jersey every game, it is something really special. The whole team has bonded really well and that's really important. It is a bit of a journey down for me but I look forward to training with the group and can't wait to get on the plane and get out there."

Watch the full interview with Lee McColgan on FAI TV here

Team News

Ireland striker Jimmy McHugh will miss the three matches in Bulgaria due to an injury sustained over the weekend. Kilbarrack United's Derek Hyland comes into the squad as well as Glen Daly from Malahide United who replaces Shane Stritch who pulled out of the squad last week.

Republic of Ireland Squad - UEFA Regions Cup Qualifying

Goalkeepers: Brendan O'Connell (Rockmount), Gary Cunningham (Westport United)
Defenders: Adam Crowley (Rockmount), Jack McMullen (Home Farm), Jack Parke (Bonagee United), Aaron Humphries (Kilbarrack United), Lee McColgan (Cockhill Celtic), Chris Smith (Aisling Annacotty)
Midfielders: Stephen Chambers (Killester Donnycarney), Eoin Murphy (Rockmount), Luke Casey (Rockmount), Nathan Broderick (Rockmount), AJ O'Connor (Fairview Rangers), Jimmy Carr (St. Michael's)
Forwards: Eoin Hayes (Newmarket Celtic), Sam Burgess (Killester Donnycarney), Glen Daly (Malahide United), Derek Hyland (Kilbarrack United).

Fixtures - UEFA Regions Cup Qualifying

25/10 - Ireland v San Marino, 9am
28/10 - Ireland v Romania, 9am
31/10 - Ireland v Bulgaria, 1pm

All matches to be played at Albena, Bulgaria.