Frankie seeks another top display against Hungary
Republic of Ireland Under-17 midfielder Frankie Sutherland was glad to bag his second international goal on Tuesday against Hungary and wants to maintain that performance level when the nations meet again on Thursday at the Carlisle Grounds (7.30pm).
The second installment of this week's double-header friendly in Bray will by Ireland's final workout ahead of their UEFA elite qualifiers scheduled for March 19-24 in Greece. They will meet Finland, Austria and host nation Greece aiming to finish top of the group and qualify for the Under-17 European Championships in Liechtenstein this May.
Queen's Park Rangers playmaker Sutherland, fresh from netting Ireland's first of a 2-0 win at Tolka Park on Tuesday, feels the Irish squad is developing nicely and can sign off on their warm-up preparations with a positive showing.
"I think once we got through the first 20 minutes on Tuesday we showed that we've a side capable of doing well in the UEFA qualifiers next month," he said.
"Our last international game was over four months ago, so it probably took us that amount of time to find some flow to our game but after the first goal went in, we started passing the ball around well and looked comfortable."
Sutherland, who declared for Ireland last summer through his Donegal-born grandmother, spoke of his delicious free-kick which opened the scoring. He said: "I was happy with the goal. When we were awarded the free-kick, I fancied taking it and no-one was getting near the ball! Thankfully, it went in."
Meanwhile, the majority of the Irish squad trained on Wednesday with a couple of players sitting out the light session due to slight knocks.
Ireland captain Sean McGinty has returned to his club, Manchester United, after playing the full game on Tuesday to be replaced by Sean Murray of Watford, who receives his debut call-up at international level.
Murray was part of the Watford side which knocked Liverpool out of the FA Youth Cup on Monday night. He was granted a new two-year contract by the Hornets last weekend.
REPUBLIC OF IRELAND SQUAD: Sean McDermott (Arsenal), Jack Bonham (Watford), Alan Smith (Crumlin United), Michael Barker (Belvedere), Neil Yadolahi (Burnley), Richard Bryan (Aston Villa), Sean Murray (Watford), Kevin Knight (Leicester City), Ben Glasgow (Arsenal), Frankie Sutherland (QPR), Shane Byrne (Leicester City), Anton Rogers (Chelsea), Carl McHugh (Reading), Callum Webb (Arsenal), Graham Burke (Belvedere), George Smith (Southend United), Darragh Kenna (Shelbourne), Daniel Purdy (West Ham United), David Murphy (Reading), Conor Smith (Watford).
Under-17 International Friendlies:
Tuesday February 9
Republic of Ireland 2-0 Hungary
Tolka Park, Dublin
Thursday February 11 (19.30hrs)
Republic of Ireland v Hungary
Carlisle Grounds, Bray
Admission: Adults: €5, Children U16: €2
A limited number of complimentary tickets are available for schoolboy/girl clubs by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org .