Ireland U17s lose out again to Croatia
Croatia 3 Republic of Ireland 0
The Republic of Ireland U17 squad today lost out to an impressive Croatian side for the second time this week.
The Croats' strength and composure proved too much for Tom Mohan's side with two wins from two friendlies in three days.
Croatia started the game very strongly firing home their opening goal within eight minutes from a left footed volley from the edge of the box from Croatian number 16 Marko Dabro. Their second goal followed shortly thereafter when Karlo Lulic broke through the Irish defence resulting from a free kick 18 minutes into the game.
The score was 2-0 at the interval with Ireland in need of some composure. They returned as an energised side, and substitutions refreshed the line up.
However, a 51st minute penalty from Croatian substitute Fran Brodic after he was taken down in the box by Ireland's Fiacre Kelleher all but cemented Croatia's win.
Despite several chances being created by Ireland, and vigour restored to the team after half time, the talented Croatian goalkeeper, Ivo Grbic pulled off some impressive saves denying Ireland a chance to get on the scoreboard.
Speaking after the game, Ireland U17 head coach Tom Mohan said: "These two fixtures were really about getting things right in time for the European qualifiers next month. It was a great opportunity to see a number of players in action, and putting my squad together for next month was my priority.
"Some players preformed really well. The goals were certainly avoidable, but we were solid in the second half and created plenty of chances. A lot of other players will return the squad from the Youth Cup in time for next month, and we will have some players returning from injury too, fingers crossed."
The squad will meet up again in three week's time ahead of their European Qualifiers against Austria, Georgia and Serbia.
Republic of Ireland: Harry Doherty, Ryan Rainey, Bobby Moseley (C), Fiacre Kelleher, Val Feeney, Sean Burke, Chris Flanagan, Cian Kavanagh, Reece Cox, Dylan Kavanagh, James Lindsay-Escofet. Subs: Cody Mulhall for Lindsay Escofet (48 mins), Harry Charsley for Flanagan (52 mins), Stephen Confrey for Feeney (52 mins), Danny Crowley for Kelleher (60 mins), Corey Galvin for D Kavanagh (74 mins), Dylan Barnett for Moseley (74 mins)
Croatia: Ivo Grbic, Marko Stolnik, Petar Mamic, Lukas Culjak, Karlo Lulic, Ivan Liolic, Anton Kresic, Duje Caleta-Car, Frane Vojkovic, Marko Dabro, Bojan Knezevic