Ireland Women’s Under-19 fall to 3-0 defeat to Portugal

Manager Ireland Women U19 Dave Connell

Manager Ireland Women U19 Dave Connell Credit: Martin Doherty (ETPhotos)

Having draw 0-0 in their first outing against Portugal earlier in the week, the Republic of Ireland suffered a 3-0 loss to their hosts at the Centro de Estágios do Luso.

Head coach Dave Connell made 10 changes from the first encounter in order to test his full squad over the two international friendly fixtures.

Sligo Rovers forward Emma Doherty was the only player to stay in the line-up and she captained the team.

The game had barely got going when Portugal were awarded a penalty inside two minutes which Inés Simas dispatched down the middle to make it 1-0.

Ireland responded well with high pressing and positive attacking play with Michaela Lawrence and Doherty both causing problems for the opposition's backline.

Portugal got their second goal just before the half hour mark when midfielder Bárbara Afonso broke through, controlled the ball and fired it past goalkeeper Katie Keane.

Connell made seven changes ahead of the second period kicking off to introduce more energy to the team. But the home team quickly added to their lead with a nice half volley finish from Maria Ferreira.

Ireland brought an aggressive edge to their game and looked to move the ball quickly with Tara O'Hanlon working well with Lia O'Leary on the left flank, while Sophie Morrin and Scarlett Herron worked hard in the middle of the pitch.

Peamount United's Michelle Doonan should have profited from a couple of half chances but the ball just did not bounce how she needed it to. And that summed up Ireland's attacking play - just lacking that bit of luck.

Overall, this was a hard-working performance that Connell will surely learn a lot from as the UEFA European Championship qualifiers draw closer.

In other underage international news, the Ireland Women’s Under-16 side recorded their second win over Wales with a 1-0 victory. The only goal of the game coming from Shelbourne’s Hannah O’Brien.

In the first fixture, Ireland recorded a 5-1 victory over the Welsh. Lauryn McCabe - younger sister of WNT captain Katie - opened the scoring before Aoibhe Brennan, Hannah O’Brien (penalty), Sorcha Melia and Rebecca Devereux added their names to the scoresheet.

Republic of Ireland: Katie Keane (Summer Lawless 78); Meabh Russell (Melissa O'Kane 78), Eve Dossen (Kate Thompson 46), Abi Tuthill, Lucy Brame (Tara O'Hanlon 46); Michaela Lawrence (Abbie Larkin 46), Orlaith O'Mahony (Sophie Morrin 46), Aoife Mohan (Scarlett Herron 46), Jamie Thompson (Eva Mangan 67), Chloe Atkinson (Lia O'Leary 46); Emma Doherty (Michelle Doonan 46).