Saturday 24 March 2018

Kiernan gives Ronan a perfect farewell

SUE RONAN Newsdesk Newsdesk

Sue Ronan's six-year reign as manager of the Ireland women's team ended on Saturday when her side beat the Basque Country 2-1 in a friendly at Tallaght Stadium.

Ronan, who captained the national team during his playing days, was understandably emotional at the end of the game but will remain working with the FAI in a developmental role.

While the game marked the end of one era, another could be about to start as 17-year-old striker Leanne Kiernan's second-half winner was her first goal at senior level.

Stephanie Roche had earlier fired Ireland ahead from a sumptuous 24th minute free-kick before Yulema Corres drew the visitors level approaching the break.

Shelbourne striker Kiernan took just seven minutes after the restart to regain the lead, darting clear from Aine O'Gorman's pass to stroke the winner home.

Ireland begin their quest to reach a first-ever major tournament next year under a new coach, with U-19 boss Dave Connell and UCD Waves boss Eileen Gleeson amongst the frontrunners to succeed Ronan.

Irish Independent

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