Ireland U19s lose to Mexico U20s in Tallaght
Republic of Ireland 0 Mexico 3
Ireland’s U19s lost to Mexico’s U20 side in the first of their two friendlies matches this week in Dublin.
First half goals from Alejandro Diaz and Daniel Rios and an 89th minute effort from substitute Diego Pineda were enough to give the Mexicans victory in an entertaining game at Tallaght Stadium.
From their first corner, early on, Ireland almost had a chance to open the scoring but neither Sean Long nor Sean Heaney were able to get the touch required before the Mexican goalkeeper Edson Resendez gathered the loose ball and after 17 minutes a great chance fell to Thomas Mulrony but he was unable to capitalise
The Mexicans then showed how to finish clinically when they took the lead on 18 minutes after a ball chipped over the Irish defence found centre forward Diaz in space on the edge of the box. As the ball dropped in front of him he struck it on the volley and sent it crashing to the net off the inside of Eric Grimes’ right-hand post.
That goal settled the visitors and ten minutes later Mexico full back Luis Martir started a move inside his own half and then raced forward to get on the end of a through ball and beat the offside trap, but he was denied by a great block from Grimes.
A minute later at the other end Alex O’Hanlon vollied wide from the edge of the six yard box while in the 32nd minute Jose Ramirez was on the end of a great move but blasted over with the goal at his mercy before Rios crashed a shot off the Irish crossbar.
Alex O’Hanlon then shot wide at other end as the Irish spurned another great chance and they fell further behind a minute before half-time when Ramirez cut the ball back across the face of goal for Rios to sweep it home from six yards.
Paul Doolin’s half-time words certainly had an effect as the Irish were much tighter after the break and although the Mexicans continued to enjoy the bulk of the possession they found it much more difficult to find a way through the Irish defence.
Indeed, the Irish should have pulled a goal back near the end but unmarked Alan O’Sullivan just failed to connect with a low cross from Dean O’Halloran and they had cause to rue that miss when Mexican substitute Diego Pineda finally found a way through the Irish rearguard when he headed home a corner at the near post.
The sides meet again on Thursday at Dalymount Park (2pm).
The games against Mexico are part of Ireland’s preparations for the Elite Phase of the UEFA European U19 Championship in Dublin at the end of the month when Ireland will play Iceland (May 28), Turkey (May 30) and Serbia (June 2) while the Mexicans’ preparations are for the forthcoming Toulon Tournament in France.
Ireland: Eric Grimes (GK); Noe Baba, Sean Long, Sean Heaney, Bobby Moseley; Thomas Mulroney, Connor Dimaio (Colm Crowe 86), Alex O’Hanlon (Liam Kelly 68), Dean O’Halloran; Sam Byrne (Alan O’Sullivan 73), Jack Hallahan (Dylan Barnett 61). Unused Substitutes: Liam Bossin (GK), Kyle McFadden, Dan Cleary,
Mexico: Edson Resendez (GK), Luis Martir, Marco Jaime (Daniel Vazquez 59), Oscar Bernal (Carlos Robles 72), Kevin Gutierrez, Sergio Flores (Victor Guzman 80), Jose Ramirez (Diego Gama 68), Sergio Rodriguez (Sergio Rodriguez Polido 73), Alejandro Diaz (Mauro Lainez 80), Daniel Rios (Diego Pineda 68), David Avalos. Unused Substitutes: Raul Gudino (GK), Oscar Suarez,
Referee: Robert Rogers (Republic of Ireland).