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23.03.2017 at 18:00 FC VW Hamme, Hamme Attendance:
Italy 0 - 2 Rep of Ireland Under 19
Referee: Nikola Dabanović European Qualifier Elite Stage-match

None Conor Levingston (34)
Ronan Hale (73)
Opening squads
Del Favero (GK)
Caoimhin Kelleher
Corey O Keeffe
Declan Rice
Conor Masterson
Trevor Clarke
Conor Levingston
Tyreke Wilson
Ronan Hale
Dan Mandroiu
Zach Elbouzedi
Jayson Molumby
Plizzari (GK)
Luca Pellegrini
Mark Travers
Daragh Leahy
Conor Kane
Stephen Mallon
Dan Mc Kenna
Michael O Connor
Zaniolo for Gabbia 63 mins,
Zanimacchia for Tumminello 75 mins,
Pinamonti for Adjapong 75 mins,
Dan Mc Kenna -> Dan Mandroiu (84)
Yellow cards
Gabbia 45+1 mins,
Frattesi 50 mins,
Varnier 72 mins,
Dan Mc Kenna (92)
Red cards
None None.
Other statistics
0 Shots 0
0 Shots on goal 0
0 Offsides 0
0 Corner kicks 0
0 Free kicks 0
0 Penalties 0
Match report | Preview
THE Republic of Ireland U19 side got off to a magnificent start in the UEFA U19 Championships Elite Qualifying Round when they beat Italy 2-0 in a thrilling encounter in the Belgian town of Hamme.

23rd Mar 2017

Conor Levingston’s first half goal followed by a second half Ronan Hale penalty sealed a memorable victory for Tom Mohan’s side, who sit on top of the group after the first series of games following host nation Belgium’s 2-1 victory over Sweden earlier today.

With just one side qualifying for the finals in Georgia this summer there is little room for slip-ups for any side so this win today is a tremendous boost to Ireland’s chances of making the finals.

The Irish looked lively from the off with Brighton striker Dan Mandroiu testing Italian keeper Mattia Del Favero in the third minute.

After several near misses the Irish broke the deadlock in the 34th minute when Levingston broke up an Italian passage of play then played a one-two with Hale before steering the ball past the advancing keeper.

Ireland were unlucky not to add a second goal just three minutes later when Mandroiu hit the Italian crossbar.

Irish keeper Caoimhin Kelleher kept out a strike from Filippo Melegoni before half-time but the Boys in Green were worthy of their half-time lead.

Mandroiu brought another save out of Del Favero five minutes after the break but as expected Ireland had to weather an Italian storm for a period of time after the restart.

Kelleher kept out efforts from Marco Tumminello, Nicolo Zaniolo and Patrick Cutrone as Italy pushed hard for an equaliser.

Ireland went two up after a brilliant run by Trevor Clarke was ended with a Marco Varnier foul in the penalty area and Hale stepped up to fire home the 73rd minute spot-kick to copperfasten Ireland’s control on the game.

Kelleher kept out efforts from Luca Zanimacchia, Cutrone and Andrea Pinamonti in the final ten minutes but Ireland showed the resolve required to seal the three points.

“We did very well and I’m very pleased for the players. In the first half we were the better side. After we scored we also hit the bar and could have been more than 1-0 up at the break,” said Mohan.

“Italy were always a threat in the second half but our forwards looked very good too. Our midfield were dominant in the first half and we were a threat in wide areas so we put it up to Italy.

“The Italians came out all guns blazing to equalise but our defence was outstanding in that period. Trevor Clarke had a brilliant run for the penalty and Ronan Hale buried it to give us some leeway.

“Caoimhin dealt with what they threw at us but our defence forced them to shoot from distance. Our defenders were excellent.

“We’ll do the recovery sessions in the morning then take it from there. Our total focus now is Sweden on Saturday and we’ll look at the areas we have to improve. This game is gone and it was a job well done but there’s a lot of football to be played in this group.“

A minute’s silence was held prior to kick-off in memory of the late Ryan McBride.

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND: Kelleher, O'Keeffe, Masterson, Rice, Wilson, Levingston, Elbouzedi, Molumby, Hale, Mandroiu (McKenna 84), Clarke.

ITALY: Del Favero, Scalera, Llamas, Melegoni, Vogliacco, Adjapong (Pinamonti 75), Cutrone, Tumminello (Zanimacchia 75), Varnier, Gabbia (Zaniolo 63), Frattesi.


UEFA U19 Championships Elite Qualifying Round Group 7

THURSDAY, MARCH 23: Republic of Ireland 2-0 Italy, Hamme (Bel)

SATURDAY, MARCH 25: Sweden v Republic of Ireland, Freethiel, Beveren (Bel)(1.00pm Irish)

TUESDAY, MARCH 28: Belgium v v Republic of Ireland, Freethiel, Beveren (Bel)(6.00pm Irish)


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