Johnny Kenny rides to rescue for 10-man Ireland U-21s

Ireland U-21 2 Iceland U-21 1

Johnny Kenny celebrates after scoring the winning goal for Ireland U-21s during last night's friendly with Iceland at Turner's Cross. Photo: Michael P Ryan/Sportsfile

JIM CRAWFORD’S Ireland U-21s played out a thrilling victory against Iceland at a sold-out Turner’s Cross despite playing for hour with 10 men.

It was the first time in 14 years that Cork had hosted an U-21 international and the end result was worth the wait.

However, Udinese’s Festy Ebosele was sent off after receiving two quick-fire yellow cards – the second one for talking back to Northern Ireland referee Jamie Robinson after the Wexford man was taken down on a run through on goal in the first half.

Iceland opened the scoring in their first attack when Rosenborg’s Kristall Mani Ingason, capped four times at senior level, fired into the top corner of Josh Keely’s net after Isak Andri Sigurgeirsson laid the ball back to him on the edge of the box.

Iceland had another effort by Ingason disallowed for offside before the home side drew level in the 24th minute.

Everton’s Tom Cannon took Andy Moran’s pass in his stride and drove home, with the ball flying into the net off goalkeeper Adam Ingi Benediktsson’s foot.

But four minutes later Ebosele got his marching orders, leaving Ireland to rejig their plans.

Ireland pulled the game out of the fire when sub Johnny Kenny hit the winner from 25 yards on his debut with just seven minutes go.

Ireland – Keely; Curtis, Lawal, MacNulty, Roughan; Phillips, Hodge, O’Neill (Armstrong 62); Cannon (Kenny 76), Moran (Leavy 62), Ebosele.

Iceland – Benediktsson (Helgason h-t); Palsson, Omarsson (Hoti 7), Thorkelsson, Gudmundsson (Kjartanson 68); Baldursson, Ludviksson (Jonsson, h-t), Sigurgeirsson (Bjornsson 68); Wohler (Heimisson, h-t), Ingason, Djuric.

Ref – J Robinson (Northern Ireland)