Thursday 22 February 2018

Ireland under 17s bow out with heads held high

England U17s 1 Ireland Under 17s 0

Adam Idah is consoled by England’s Jadon Sancho after Ireland were knocked out of the Euros. Photo: Sportsfile
Adam Idah is consoled by England’s Jadon Sancho after Ireland were knocked out of the Euros. Photo: Sportsfile

A spectacular strike by rising Manchester City star Jadon Sancho finally sent Ireland's under 17s packing from the European Championships, bowing out 1-0 to England in the quarter-finals in Croatia.

Colin O'Brien's side were fortunate to advance to the knockout stages after losing two of their three group games, including a 7-0 defeat to Germany last time out.

But this was a much better performance against an England side that had claimed convincing wins against the Netherlands, Ukraine and Norway.

Ireland battled well, but were chasing the game for the most part, Sancho putting Steve Cooper's side ahead on 13 minutes with a stunning 30-yard thunderbolt that flew into Brian Maher's top corner.

Shamrock Rovers' Aaron Bolger was given his marching orders for a second yellow card on 78 minutes to make matters even more difficult for Ireland.

Victory would have secured a spot at October's under 17 World Cup in India, but despite the disappointment, O'Brien remained positive.

"England are a high-quality team that I expect to go far in this competition," he said. "Our boys are after getting huge experience from these finals. It's the furthest Ireland have reached in a long time. We had six players in that squad who are underage again next year who have got huge experience."

Sunday Indo Sport

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