Wednesday 18 September 2019

Four-goals on debut, a hat-trick and three braces - Ireland U17 enjoy massive win in Euro qualifier

Ireland 14 Albania 0

17 September 2018; Republic of Ireland head coach Colin Bell during the Women's U17 International Friendly match between Republic of Ireland and Czech Republic at the RSC in Waterford. Photo by Harry Murphy/Sportsfile
17 September 2018; Republic of Ireland head coach Colin Bell during the Women's U17 International Friendly match between Republic of Ireland and Czech Republic at the RSC in Waterford. Photo by Harry Murphy/Sportsfile

The Ireland U17 women's team recorded a hugely impressive 14-0 win over Albania in the first match of the UEFA European Championships Qualifying Round.

Emily Kraft enjoyed a memorable international debut, netting four goals while team-mate Emily Whelan notched a hat-trick in what was a thoroughly dominant performance.

Three Irish players also scored braces - Eabha O'Mahony, Jessica Ziu and Katelyn Keogh - while Mia Dodd added the final goal in injury time.

"The girls played some excellent football. We started off extremely focused and the attitude from the first minute was absolutely brilliant," said manager Colin Bell.

"From the very first minute, we created chances and once we scored, the players just kept going and scored some fantastic goals which is important for the confidence of the players. These goals could be really important at the end of the qualifying round with the goal difference but it also gives us the right mentality.

"We've got two tough matches coming up against Wales and Serbia so it's important we don't become complacent after this and concentrate on getting two more positive results. We'll be going to watch the Wales and Serbia match this afternoon so the players can see what we'll be facing.

"Emily Kraft did really well. She's a really robust player, very physical and gives us another dimension. She trains five or six times a week in Germany and the players have really taken to her straight away so it's great to see."

Republic of Ireland: Courtney Maguire, Shauna Brennan, Mia Dodd, Ellie Ferguson, Orla Prendergast (Aoibhin Clancy 46), Jessica Ziu, Eabha O'Mahony (C), Emily Whelan (Sophie Liston 81), Rebecca Cooke (Blessing Kingsley 46), Emily Kraft (Katelyn Keogh 67), Therese Kinneavey.

Albania: Antigona Hyska (Vosjana Fera 50), Ornela Lleshi, Matilda Gjergji, Selma Armoku (Joana Mile 90), Iris Armoku (Ksenja Rizallaraj 33, Joana Nicku 90), Klea Hamonikaj, Denada Avullija, Mikaela Metalla (C), Amarda Xhebrahimi (Iniada Delilaj 90), Katerina Simoni, Fabiola Caka.

Referee: Meitar Shemesh (ISR)

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