GWEEDORE CELTIC’S MARC WALSH played 64 minutes for the Republic of Ireland Under-15 side went down to an unfortunate 2-1 loss to the Holland today.
The narrow reversal came in the first game of their friendly international tournament in Turkey this afternoon. All the goals came in the latter stages of the contest with the score actually still 0-0 as Walsh was replaced.
Colin O’Brien’s side produced a solid display in testing heat and were unlucky not to secure at least a draw from the game. Turkey beat Austria 3-0 in the other game in the group.
Ireland started well with Nathan Collins forcing a save from the Dutch keeper Joey Koorevaar following a seventh minute corner.
In the 26th minute Sean Brennan had a low strike saved after being put through by Callum Thompson.
On the half hour the Dutch threatened an opener when Quinten Maduro burst into the box but pulled his strike across goal.
Three minutes later Max Murphy slipped a pass through for Adam Idah to break in on goal but the Netherlands keeper saved well.
Idah had a shot charged down in the 54th minute and Kameron Ledwidge was unfortunate to see his follow up effort also blocked.
Six minutes later Ledwidge cleared off the line to save the Irish defence as the Dutch upped the pressure.
In the 65th minute Wouter Burger opened the scoring when the Irish back four could only half-clear a corner and his volley went through a number of bodies to find the net.
Two minutes later the Netherlands extended their lead when a long ball through fell to Damien Timan and after his first shot was blocked by Max Murphy it turned to Timan and he knocked home the loose ball.
Tyriek Wright pulled one back for the Irish five minutes from time when he fired home after good work by Adam Idah.
Kian Clarke made another excellent save in injury-time to deny the Dutch a third goal but overall a draw would have been a fair result.
Irish head coach Colin O’Brien was pleased with the performance as a whole in testing conditions in Antalya.
“It took us 20 minutes to settle and the boys really got an education playing in the heat. It was very hot, which would have been a challenge to our lads at this time of the year,” said O’Brien.
“We defended well but gave it away a bit too easily after we won it back. The second 20 minutes of the first half we created the better chances and I was pleased with how we did.
“In the second half Holland got two quick goals, one from a set-piece and the second one was a bit fortunate albeit with a good finish. Our goal was down to good link up play. Adam Idah did well to set it up and it was a good finish from Tyriek. I felt we deserved a draw.
“We will have to be better in terms of how we use the ball after we win it back so that’s something we’ll work on before our next game against Turkey. We saw their game against Austria and they are a decent side with a lot of good attacking players.
“Our boys were disappointed and felt they didn’t deserve to lose it. That’s always a good sign when you play a top class side like the Netherlands.”
Republic of Ireland: Kian Clarke, Jason Knight, Ray O’Sullivan, Nathan Collins, Sean Brennan, Marc Walsh, Barry Coffey, Adam Idah, Callum Thompson, Max Murphy, Kameron Ledwidge. Subs: Tyriek Wright for Coffey 64 mins; Sean Mahon Brennan for Walsh 64.
U15 International Tournament: Tuesday, February 2
Republic of Ireland 1-2 Netherlands, Turkey 3-0 Austria
Thursday, February 4
Republic of Ireland v Turkey, Emirhan Sports Complex, Turkey (10am Irish)
Netherlands v Austria, Emirhan Sports Complex, Turkey (12:30pm Irish)
Saturday, February 6
Republic of Ireland v Austria, Emirhan Sports Complex, Turkey (12:30pm Irish)
Turkey v Netherlands, Emirhan Sports Complex, Turkey (10:00am Irish)Tags: