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01.09.2009 at 19:00 Zgierz Attendance:
Russia 2 - 1 Rep of Ireland
Referee: Syrenka Cup-match

None Frankie Sutherland (12)
Opening squads
Sean Mc Dermott
Sean Mc Ginty
Ben Glasgow
Richard Bryan
Michael Barker
Callum Webb
Shane Byrne
Brian Mc Groary
Frankie Sutherland
George Smith
Daniel Purdy
Neil Yadolahi
Anton Rodgers
Aidan O'Brien
None Anton Rodgers -> George Smith (68)
Neil Yadolahi -> Ben Glasgow (68)
Aidan O'Brien -> Callum Webb (70)
Yellow cards
None None.
Red cards
None None.
Match report | Preview
Russia U17 2-1 Republic of Ireland U17

The Republic of Ireland Under-17s produced a polished performance in their opening friendly of the season at Syrenka International Cup in Poland but fell to defeat against a clinical Russia side.

The concession of goals by Ireland two minutes in each half proved costly. Frankie Sutherland, one of four Irish players to make their international debuts today, managed to pull Ireland back on terms on twelve minutes but they were denied a second equaliser late on as the Russian goalkeeper foiled a series of attempts by the Irish strike-force.

Ireland manager Sean McCaffrey declared himself satisfied with his side's display in their maiden outing of the campaign.

He said: "We dominated the game for long spells and restricted Russia to three shots on goal, two of which they scored from.

"Considering we only had one training session in preparation, I was extremely pleased with how the team blended in this first match. The style of football was excellent and we created a number of good scoring chances.

"There were some superb individual performances but if there is one aspect we can improve on, it's to tighten up as a defensive unit. I am confident that will get better when they play more games together."

After conceding within two minutes, Ireland slowly began to take a foothold with the pace of Brian McGroary on the flank their main attacking outlet.

The Wolves youngster supplied the delivery from a corner on twelve minutes that allowed Sutherland to climb above his marker and head home the equaliser.

McGroary got into some great positions and the goalkeeper had to be alert to deny the Irish flanker's shot on two occasions in the first half.

Ireland's hopes of converting their territorial dominance into goals in the second half were dented when, within two minutes of the restart, Russia punished them for backing off in the last third. Irish goalkeeper Sean McDermott had helpless to prevent a shot rattling the net to make it 2-1.

It was one-way traffic in the final ten minutes, as Ireland broke away in numbers chasing the leveler.

Substitute Aidan O'Brien, on his first appearance for Ireland, brought the best out of the goalkeeper before Russia's netminder confirmed his man-of-the-match display by turning Daniel Purdy's curler around the post five minutes from time.

In the other Group B game of the day, Poland's 1-0 defeat of Sweden means Ireland's second game of the tournament tomorrow will be against the Swedes, whom they will also come up against in the UEFA qualifiers later in the month.

Ireland: Sean McDermott (Arsenal); Ben Glasgow (Arsenal), Richard Bryan (Aston Villa), Sean McGinty (Manchester United), Michael Barker (Belvedere); Brian McGroary (Wolverhampton Wanderers), Callum Webb (Arsenal), Shane Byrne (Leicester City), George Smith (Southend); Frankie Sutherland (QPR), Daniel Purdy (West Ham United).

Substitutions: Anton Rodgers (Chelsea) for Smith and Neil Yadolahi (St. Kevin's Boys) for Glasgow (both 68 mins), Aidan O`Brien (Millwall) for Webb (70 mins).

U17 Syrenka International Cup tournament fixtures (all kick-off 4.30pm, local time):

Tuesday, 1 September
Russia 2-1 Republic of Ireland - Zgierz

Wednesday, 2 September
Republic of Ireland v Sweden - SMS Łódź / Kutno

Friday, 4 September
Republic of Ireland v (TBC) Bulgaria/Romania/Denmark/Ukraine.
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