Mohan disappointed as u17s fall to defeat
Serbia U-17 2-0 Ireland U-17
Serbia's hoodoo over Ireland at underage level continues as they dealt a blow to Tom Mohan's ambition of leading a side to a second successive Euro U-17 finals.
A goal in each half did the damage on the opening day of the elite qualifiers, leaving Ireland with work to do against Montenegro tomorrow and mini-group hosts Poland on Saturday.
Second place could be enough to reach the expanded tournament in May but an improvement is needed on yesterday's display for qualification to be realistic.
They were caught on the counter-attack yesterday in Pruszkow after 24 minutes with Stefan Ilic putting the finishing touch on a sweeping move by beating Mark Travers in the Irish goal.
Another preventable goal was conceded on the hour as Dejan Joveljic slipped in unmarked to score.
"It was a disappointing result and it was a poor game on a bad pitch. Serbia were a big side who took no chances on a very hard pitch and played the conditions better than we did," said Mohan.
"The two goals were poorly defended and it was frustrating. Our mistakes were punished while there's weren't.
"We had three reasonable chances late on but overall it was a stop-start game that suited them better than us."
IRELAND: M Travers (Unattached); C Carroll (Oxford Utd, A O'Driscoll (Manchester City), D O'Shea (West Bromwich Albion), T Wilson (Manchester City); L Browning (IF Brommapojkarna), L. O'Connor (Villa, Waterford); T Byrne (Brighton), A Scully (West Ham Utd), S Mallon (Sheffield Utd); J Molumby (Brighton). Subs: D McKenna (Wolves) for Browning, R O'Sullivan (Brighton) for Mallon (both 51), G McAuley (Liverpool) for Scully (68).