Ireland U16 girls finish tournament with Belgian loss
Republic of Ireland 1-3 Belgium
THE Republic of Ireland U16 Girls international side finished their UEFA Development Tournament campaign with an unfortunate 3-1 loss to Belgium in stifling heat in the Swiss district of Magglingen today.
Sharon Boyle's side got off to a very good star with Sarah McKevitt opening the scoring with a brilliant individual goal, beating a defender before firing to the roof of the net from long distance.
Belgium were awarded a first half penalty after an unfortunate hand-ball by an Irish defender but the Belgians fired wide from the spot-kick.
Eleanor Ryan-Doyle then had a great chance to extend Ireland's lead before half-time but the Belgian keeper denied her in a one v one situation.
Belgium were then awarded a second spot-kick just before the break when Lucy McCarton was penalised for a challenge in the area and this time Irish keeper Amanda McQuillan was beaten.
Luck deserted Ireland in the second half when Evelyn Daly was sin-binned as under the competition rules a yellow card forces a player off for ten minutes. To compound matters the Belgians scored twice when Daly was off the pitch.
"Overall I'm very pleased with how the week has gone. It was a development tournament to prepare for Dave Connell's U17s when they play in the UEFA qualifiers in October," said Boyle.
"I believe 12 or 13 of them will step up to that level so it was a great experience for them. Another four are eligible again at this age group next year and I'd like to think after Gaynor Cup they can push on for the U17s."
REPUBLIC OF IRELAND: Amanda McQullan, Lauren O'Callaghan, Jamie Finn, Erica Byrne, Niamh Prior, Lucy McCarton, Evelyn Daly, Sarah Baynes, Dearbhaile O'Beirne, Sarah McKevitt, Eleanor Ryan-Doyle. Subs: Roma McLaughlin for Ryan-Doyle, Niamh Farrelly for Byrne; Leah Reybet-Degat for Sarah Baines; Aislinn Meeney for O'Berine; Chloe Maloney for Prior; Danielle Murray for McKevitt.