Tournaments play such an important part to player development - Paul Osam ahead of under-16 Turkey Tournament

Mon, Jan 13 2020

Republic of Ireland Under-16 Head Coach Paul Osam has confirmed his 20 player squad for the friendly tournament taking place in Turkey over the next week.

Osam's team will take on Tanzania, Turkey and Kosovo in the Aegean Cup before competing in a play-off game on Tuesday, January 21.

He named four players for the first time in his squad with St Patrick’s Athletic duo Gerard Killane and Jack O’Reilly making the selection, along with Dara McGuinness (Shamrock Rovers) and Harry Nevin (Cork City).
"We're used to playing European sides so Tanzania will be an unknown quantity for us," said Osam. "It will be a good test but the focus will ultimately be on our game plan and what we can do.
"Turkey have traditionally had a strong underage teams and this side has beaten Portugal and Serbia. They’re the host nation so it will be a challenge, but make no mistake we’ll be prepared for it.

"Likewise with Kosovo, while not much will be known about them, the focus will be on our game plan and the strengths we possess and the problems we can cause the opposition."

“At Under-16 level it is crucial to provide Colin O'Brien [Ireland Under-17 Head Coach] with a group of players who can go on and qualify for the European Championships.

"If you look at Colin's team that qualified for the Elite Round in November the main bulk of that squad were with me at Under-16s, so continuity is vital. Tournaments like these play such an important part to that development."
There are six players from the St. Patrick’s Athletic underage set up, five from Shamrock Rovers and four from Bohemians

Republic of Ireland squad (in full)
Goalkeepers: Jack Ross (Bray Wanderers), Reece Byrne (Bohemians)
Defenders: John Ryan (Shamrock Rovers), Gerard Killane (St Patrick’s Athletic), Darragh Reilly (Sligo Rovers), James Abankwah (St Patrick’s Athletic), Aaron O’Reilly (St Patrick’s Athletic), Conor Barrett (Birmingham City), Sean Grehan (Bohemians), Harry Nevin (Cork City)
Midfielders: Glory Nzingo (St Patrick’s Athletic), Jamie Mullins (Bohemians), Zayd Abada (Shamrock Rovers), Ben Curtis (Shamrock Rovers), John Joe Power (Burton Albion)
Forwards: Cian Kelly Caprani (Bohemians), Tom Lonergan (St Patrick’s Athletic), Dara McGuinness (Shamrock Rovers), Edwin Agbaje (Shamrock Rovers), Jack O’Reilly (St Patrick’s Athletic)
January 15 – Ireland v Tanzania, Turkey, KO 9am (Irish time)
January 17 – Turkey v Ireland, Turkey, KO 11.30am (Irish time)
January 19 – Ireland v Kosovo,  Turkey, KO 9am (Irish time)
January 21 – Playoff Fixture, venue TBC, KO 9am (Irish time) / Final, Turkey, KO 11.30am (Irish time)