Ryan Manning brace maintains Ireland U21s perfect Euro qualifying record
QPR midfielder Ryan Manning scored twice as the Republic of Ireland Under-21s maintained their 100% start to the 2019 European Championship Group Five qualifying campaign with a 3-1 win over 10-man Azerbaijan in Baku.
Noel King's side, who beat Kosovo 1-0 at the Tallaght Stadium in March, took an early lead in the ninth minute after Manning had been set up by Derry City forward Ronan Curtis.
Azerbaijan, though, were soon level as Qarabag striker and captain Mahir Madatov netted after 11 minutes.
Manning found the net again five minutes before half-time after being played in by QPR team-mate Reece Grego-Cox.
The Hoops' duo were involved as the Republic of Ireland extended their lead soon after the restart as Grego-Cox followed up to make it 3-1 after 51 minutes.
The home side then quickly found themselves down to 10 men soon as, just two minutes later, forward Elnur Jafarov was shown a second yellow card for a foul on Huddersfield defender Danny Kane.
Manning went close to bagging a hat-trick during the closing stages, while Ryan Sweeney, on loan at Bristol Rovers from Stoke, also had a late effort blocked.
Independent.ie Comments Facility
INM has taken the decision to remove the commenting facility on its online platform Independent.ie to minimise the legal risk to our business that arises from Ireland's draconian libel awards system.
We continue to look forward to receiving comments through direct email contact or via social media, some of which may still be featured on the website Independent.ie