PREVIEW | Ireland U21 v Israel U21
The two-legged tie has been described by U21 Manager Jim Crawford as ‘the biggest games in the history of Ireland Under-21s’.
A crowd close to sell-out is expected for the game with this group of U21s looking to create history by becoming the first Irish U21s side to reach a European Championship.
Fixture: Republic of Ireland U21 v Israel U21
KO time: 7pm
Stadium: Tallaght Stadium, Dublin
Where to watch: RTÉ2 and RTÉPlayer
Referee: Dario Bel (Croatia)
Assistant: Kruno Šaric (Croatia)
Assistant: Ivan Janić (Croatia)
Fourth Official: Patrik Kolarić (Croatia)
Latest team news: Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper Josh Keeley has been called-up to the squad with Sligo Rovers’ Luke McNicholas a doubt.
Republic of Ireland Under-21 Manager: “Israel are a very good side and it will be a challenge but the players and the staff are looking forward to the games. Two-legged games are different in a sense that if the first result goes well, it’s still only half-time but if that result doesn’t go your way, you have another game to come. We want the crowd to come out and get behind the lads because the fans could be the difference.”
Republic of Ireland Under-21 captain Conor Coventry: “I’ve grown up playing with a lot of these players and the chance to go to a European Championship with them is something we want all to achieve. We want to create history together and be the first Ireland U21s side to reach a EUROS.”
Republic of Ireland Under-21 Squad
Goalkeepers: Josh Keeley (Tottenham Hotspur), Brian Maher (Derry City), Luke McNicholas (Sligo Rovers), David Odomosu (St. Patrick’s Athletic)
Defenders: Eiran Cashin (Derby County), Festy Ebosele (Udinese), Anselmo Garcia MacNulty (NAC Breda, on loan from Wolfsburg), Andy Lyons (Shamrock Rovers), Jake O’Brien (RWD Molenbeek, on loan from Crystal Palace), Lee O’Connor (Tranmere Rovers), Joe Redmond (St. Patrick’s Athletic), Sean Roughan (Lincoln City)
Midfielders: Finn Azaz (Plymouth Argyle, on loan from Aston Villa), Conor Coventry (West Ham United), Dawson Devoy (MK Dons), Joe Hodge (Wolves), Adam O’Reilly (St. Patrick’s Athletic), Will Smallbone (Stoke City, on loan from Southampton), Ross Tierney (Motherwell)
Forwards: Aaron Connolly (Venezia, on loan from Brighton & Hove Albion), Dara Costelloe (Burnley),Evan Ferguson (Brighton & Hove Albion), Joshua ‘JJ’ Kayode (MK Dons, on loan from Rotherham United), Ollie O’Neill (Fulham), Mipo Odubeko (Port Vale, on loan from West Ham United), Tyreik Wright (Bradford City, on loan from Aston Villa)
UEFA European Under-21 Championship Play-Offs (all times are Irish time)
Friday, September 23 | Ireland U21 v Israel U21, Tallaght Stadium, Dublin, KO 7pm
Tuesday, September 27 | Israel U21 v Ireland U21, Bloomfield Stadium, Tel Aviv, Israel KO 6.15pm