Scannell included in Under-19 squad for UEFA Elite qualifiers

Scannell included in Under-19 squad for UEFA Elite qualifiers

Republic of Ireland Under-21 International Sean Scannell has been included by manager Sean McCaffrey in his squad for next week’s UEFA Under-19 Elite qualifiers in Belgium against Switzerland, Sweden and the hosts. Blackburn Rovers are represented by four players, including Aaron Doran who has made three first-team outings.
29th May 2009
Republic of Ireland Under-19 manager Sean McCaffrey has been able to call upon Crystal Palace striker Sean Scannell for the upcoming UEFA Under-19 Elite qualifiers in Belgium from June 5-10 after naming his squad today on Friday.

Scannell won promotion from the Under-18 squad into the Under-21 panel last season and has dropped back to his own age-group as Ireland bid to reach the European Championship finals to be staged in Belarus in July.

McCaffrey has confirmed 17 players and will complete his squad by adding another goalkeeper before the group assemble in Dublin this weekend.

Blackburn Rovers quartet Callum O’Connor, Gavin Gunning, Gearoid Morrissey and Aaron Doran are included, as is Arsenal midfielder Conor Henderson – fresh from helping the Gunners to the FA Youth Cup title on Monday when they secured a victory over two legs against Liverpool.

The Irish squad travel to Belgium on Wednesday and begin their qualification quest on Friday, June 5 against Belgium at the Complex Op de Keiberg in Tongeren before playing Switzerland at the same venue two days later. They wrap up the series against Sweden on Wednesday, June 10 at the Sport Centrum in Tessenderio.

The Republic of Ireland advanced through the first phase qualifiers in Malta last November when they clinched one of top two positions in the four-nation group to confirm their place in the Elite phase. Only the nation that finishes top of the group will qualify for the finals.

Sean McCaffrey said: “We have a difficult qualifying group to progress from to reach the finals but we’ll be confident of challenging for that top spot.

“All we’re thinking about is getting a good result against host nation Belgium in the opening game on Friday. That’s the one we’re preparing for and the outcome of that match will have a major bearing on how we fare.”

He added: “We’re delighted to have Sean Scannell in the squad and his experience for club and country is crucial to the squad. Also, seven of this panel have experience of reaching a major UEFA finals after they played in the Under-17 Championships last summer in Turkey.”

Kieron Thorp (Crystal Palace)
Lanre Oyebanjo (Histon)
Callum O’Connor (Blackburn Rovers)
Gavin Gunning (Blackburn Rovers)
Callum Morris (Newcastle United)
Damian McCrory (Plymouth Argyle)
Richie Towell (Celtic)
Conor Hourihane (Sunderland)
Conor Clifford (Chelsea)
Gearoid Morrissey (Blackburn Rovers)
Conor Henderson (Arsenal)
Aaron Doran (Blackburn Rovers)
Jamie Devitt (Hull City)
Ronan Murray (Ipswich Town)
Sean Scannell (Crystal Palace)
James Collins (Aston Villa)
Greg Cunningham (Manchester City)

*Ronan Forde (Salthill Devon), Paul Murphy (Ipswich Town), Andy Boyle (UCD) and Shane McEleney (Derry City) have been invited to train with the squad prior to departure to Belgium.

UEFA U19 Championship – Elite Qualifying Phase Fixtures

5 June 2009
Belgium v Republic of Ireland
Complex Op de Keiberg – Tongeren
Kick-off – 19.00 hrs (local time)

7 June 2009
Republic of Ireland v Switzerland
Complex Op de Keiberg – Tongeren
Kick-off: 16.00 hrs (local time)

10 June 2009
Sweden v Republic of Ireland
Sport Centrum – Tessenderio
Kick-off: 19.00 hrs (local time).