Lucy Quinn: ‘I'm a bit of an attention seeker apparently! I look to rise to the occasion.’
Macdara Ferris reports from the National Football Stadium in Windsor Park
Reflecting on a whirlwind year with the Republic of Ireland, that included that World Cup debut for the Girls in Green, and a UEFA Nations League campaign with six wins out of six, Lucy Quinn said she is “a bit sad that the year is almost over; I don't know how we top that next year.”
The Birmingham City player, speaking after her international team’s 6-1 win in Windsor Park, admitted that “the World Cup was something that I never thought I'd be able to do. To do it with this group and push on from that point - I've loved every bit of it.
“I've always wanted to be a footballer and dream of big crowds watching the game, being on the stage, I'm a bit of an attention seeker apparently! I look to rise to the occasion.
"I like the phrase that ‘pressure is a privilege’ and I want to be someone that the girls looks to at those moments and to be a big game player. We want to be taken seriously as a team and we want to continue to go to big tournaments.”
Quinn got Ireland’s first goal on the night in Windsor Park - her fifth international strike - and that goal set the Girls in Green on their way to a 6-1 win.
It was a goal to match the opener she scored in the 3-0 victory over Northern Ireland in front of 35,000 in the Aviva Stadium earlier in the campaign.
“It was great to end the year and the campaign with a goal and I'm really happy with it. It was nice (to score). I want to bring goals to the team and more than that helping with the creative part in the final third.
“I'm proud with how we have reacted tonight (after lacklustre 1-0 win over Hungary last Friday). We played some really nice football tonight in a super competitive game. We were up for it and you could tell.”
The goals on the night were spread across six different scorers – first half strikers from Lucy Quinn and Heather Payne along with four goals in the second half from Kyra Carusa, Katie McCabe, Louise Quinn and Caitlin Hayes. The six strikes brought Ireland’s tally to 20 goals from the six group games – only conceding two.
“We are annoyed we've conceded two to be honest but it has been really enjoyable campaign and when you hear the stats back like that are really something to be proud of. As a team we have gone to the next level.
“You can't always rely on one or two players but you need goal threats from everywhere. We've shown that tonight.
"Some of the goals were just quality - we will be watching them back tonight to decide whose was the best! It was just a really good way to end the campaign.”