Rep of Ireland U17 1-2 Austria U17
Noel O’Reilly’s Irish under-17 side suffered a setback in their hopes of making it to the second qualification phase of the Uefa European Championships when going down to their Austrian counterparts in Grenchen, Switzerland on Tuesday evening.
The Irish went into this four-team tournament – from which two sides go forward to the next phase – as one of the favourites to progress following their friendly tournament victory in Hungary in August.
The game appeared to be heading for a scoreless draw before a dramatic final ten minutes, when the Austrians scored twice before Ireland battled back to close the deficit to one before the final whistle.
Substitute Idrizaj opened the scoreline for the Austrians on 71 minutes, and they doubled the lead through striker Hoffer five minutes later.
Leeds United youngster Ian Morris converted from the penalty spot in injury time at the end of the 80 minutes after Ipswich’s Billy Clarke had been deemed to have been fouled inside the area, but the Irish teenagers were unable to find the leveller that would have given them a better chance of claiming one of the two qualification berths.
In the day’s other game, Belarus caused an upset when downing the hosts Switzerland on a 1-0 scoreline in Lyss. Ireland meet Belarus in Lyss tomorrow (Thursday).
Rep of Ireland under-17: Randolph (Charlton Athletic), Keane (Belvedere), Stapleton (Reading), Gibson (Derry City), O’Dea (Celtic), S. Kelly (Kingdom Boys), J.P. Kelly (Liverpool), Morris (Leeds United), O’Carroll (Celtic), Stokes (Arsenal), Hayes (Reading). Subs: Gaynor (Millwall) for Hayes (67 mins), Clarke (Leeds United) for Stokes (75 mins), Fitzgerald (Lourdes Celtic) for Keane (77 mins).
Austria under-17: Kuru, Gramann, Asinger, Suttner, Hackmair, Kreimer, Madl, Walzer, Tosun, Hoffer, Seelaus. Subs: Idrizak for Kreimer (41 mins), Lercher for Seelaus (60 mins), Okotie for Hoffer (80 mins).