German class damages U-19s' Euro prospects
Ireland 0 Germany 1 U19s Women's UEFA Qualifier
Defeat last night in their opening elite qualifier leaves Ireland realistically chasing the best runner-up route to the Women's U-19 European finals.
Dave Connell's side needed to get something from this Germany clash at Tallaght Stadium to stand a chance of challenging the top seeds for automatic qualification as they're expected to comfortably see off Poland and Azerbaijan in their last two games this week.
Germany's deserved victory was sealed by a sublime winner scored on 31 minutes.
When Lina Hausicke looked up to float a lobbed pass to dissect the home defence, Viktoria Schwalm provided a finish with equal style by controlling with her first touch and drilling a low shot beyond Amanda McQuillan.
The Ireland goalkeeper was kept busy throughout, getting down brilliantly to keep out a free-kick by Nina Ehegotz just before the break and also foiling Stefanie Sanders when the attacker broke clear only to be denied by the Shelbourne stopper.
It was a night of containment for the Irish and but, when the breakaways were offered, their final pass lacked precision.
Long throw-ins caused the Germans some concern but their goalkeeper Vivien Brandt was only extended from set-pieces as Ireland failed to muster one effort on target.
Jamie Finn came closest to conjuring an equaliser, yet her dipping shot early in the second half veered wide of the target.
Ireland - A McQuillan (Shelbourne); N Nelson (San Diego Turf), S McCarthy (Glasgow City), K Keenan (Shelbourne), N Prior (UCD Waves); H Nolan (Hartford Hawks), E Daly (Cork City), J Gargan (Quinnipiac Bobcats); J Finn (Shelbourne), J Nolan (Galway), R McLaughlin (Peamount Utd). Subs: L McCartan (Peamount Utd) for Daly (51), R Kearns (Castlebar) for Finn (72), D Beirne (Shelbourne) for J Nolan (81).