11.03.2020 at 15:00 - Pod Malim Brdom, Budva
Taking top spot in Group I is now on the agenda for the Republic of Ireland as they prepare to come up against Montenegro in their next UEFA Womens EURO 2021 qualifier.
Having claimed a 1-0 home win over Greece last Thursday, Vera Pauws team aim to extend their unbeaten run on Wednesday as they face an opponent who they previously beat 2-0 last September.
Three points would be enough to elevate Ireland to top spot, ahead of their meeting with current group leaders Germany next month, and further boost their chances of qualifying for next summers finals tournament in England.
The nine group winners and the three best runners-up (not counting results against the sixth-placed team) qualify directly for the final tournament, while the remaining six runners-up advance to the play-offs.
Stephanie Roche linked up with the squad following the withdrawal of Chloe Mustaki (knee), while Emily Whelan was recalled from the Womens Under-19s following an injury to Heather Payne (hamstring).
Republic of Ireland Manager Vera Pauw
“We set ourselves the target of six points from two games in this series, so having beaten Greece last week we now know that our job is to beat Montenegro to complete that task.
“We know what to expect from Montenegro and we will need to apply a lot of pressure to break through and score the goals that we need to win the game. So that is what we have been preparing for.
“We have not had that much time together to work as a team with only a few days training before the Greece game, but I have told the players that the more time we have together then the better we will become in possession and in finishing chances in front of goal. And that, ultimately, is what we need to do in order to take the three points.
“We have prepared well for this game and we are looking forward to it.
Republic of Ireland
Goalkeepers: Marie Hourihan (SC Braga), Grace Moloney (Reading), Courtney Brosnan (West Ham United)
Defenders: Harriet Scott (Birmingham City), Aine O Gorman (Peamount United), Diane Caldwell (SC Sand), Claire O Riordan (MSV Duisburg), Louise Quinn (Arsenal), Claire Walsh (Peamount United)
Midfielders: Niamh Fahey (Liverpool), Denise O Sullivan (North Carolina Courage), Hayley Nolan (Connecticut Fusion), Jamie Finn (Shelbourne), Julie-Ann Russell (Sydney University), Ruesha Littlejohn (West Ham United), Niamh Farrelly (Peamount United), Stephanie Roche (Peamount United)
Forwards: Katie McCabe (Arsenal), Rianna Jarrett (Brighton & Hove Albion), Amber Barrett (FC Koln), Clare Shine (Glasgow City), Emily Whelan (Shelbourne), Krya Carusa (HB Hoge)
Goalkeepers: Ivana Čabarkapa (Breznica, MNE), Ines Obradović (Modriča), Anastasija Krstović (Budućnost, MNE)
Defenders: Maja Šaranović, Helena Božić (Partizan), Dženita Ramčilović (Grasshoppers), Tatjana Đurković (Kariatides), Aleksandra Popović (Vlaznia), Sanja Nedić (SFK), Jovana Nišavić (Obilić, MNE)
Midfielders: Jelena Karličić (Breznica, MNE), Slađana Bulatović (Rayo Vallecano), Jasna Đoković (SFK), Jelena Vujadinović, Milica Šebek (Breznica, MNE), Darija Đukić (Partizan)
Forwards: Marija Vukčević (Chietti), Armisa Kuč (SFK), Nađa Stanović (Katowice), Ana Knežević (Breznica, MNE), Nađa Đurđevac, Anđela Tošković (Budućnost, MNE), Medina Dešić (Wurzburg).
Goalkeepers: Marie Hourihan (23 caps / 10 clean sheets), Grace Moloney (2 caps / 0 clean sheets), Courtney Brosnan (0 caps / 0 clean sheets)
Defenders: Harriet Scott (19 caps / 0 goals), Aine O Gorman (101 caps / 13 goals), Diane Caldwell (75 caps / 2 goals), Claire O Riordan (15 caps / 0 goals), Louise Quinn (78 caps / 11 goals), Claire Walsh (2 caps / 0 goals)
Midfielders: Niamh Fahey (89 caps / 0 goals), Denise O Sullivan (76 caps / 10 goals), Hayley Nolan (0 caps / 0 goals), Jamie Finn (1 cap / 0 goals), Julie-Ann Russell (59 caps / 4 goals), Ruesha Littlejohn (55 caps / 6 goals), Niamh Farrelly (2 caps / 0 goals), Stephanie Roche (55 caps / 13 goals)
Forwards: Katie McCabe (44 caps / 8 goals), Rianna Jarrett (9 caps / 1 goal), Amber Barrett (17 caps / 2 goals), Clare Shine (6 caps / 0 goals), Emily Whelan (3 caps / 0 goals), Kyra Carusa (0 caps / 0 goals)
September 3, 2019: Republic of Ireland 2-0 Montenegro
October 8, 2019: Republic of Ireland 3-2 Ukraine
October 8, 2019: Greece 0-5 Germany
November 6, 2019: Montenegro 0-4 Greece
November 12, 2019: Greece 1-1 Republic of Ireland
March 5, 2020: Republic of Ireland 1-0 Greece
March 11, 2020: Montenegro v Republic of Ireland
April 11, 2020: Germany v Republic of Ireland
June 5, 2020: Ukraine v Republic of Ireland
September 22, 2020: Republic of Ireland v Germany
- Ireland and Montenegro have both yet to qualify for the UEFA Womens European Championships
- Midfielder Niamh Fahey is set to win her 90th senior cap having made her debut against Portugal in March 2007
- Since the announcement of the provisional squad, Ireland have lost Megan Connolly (shoulder), Jessica Ziu (groin), Chloe Mustaki (knee), Leanne Kiernan (knee), and Heather Payne (hamstring) to injury
- Stephanie Roche has been drafted back into the squad not long after confirming that she will rejoin Peamount United following stints in France, United States, England and Italy
- Emily Whelan, who started in the 1-1 draw with Greece last November, was in Spain with the Ireland Womens Under-19s preparing for two friendlies with Russia when she was recalled to the senior squad
- The crowd of 5,411 that turned up for Ireland v Greece last week was the second highest in the history of the Ireland Womens Senior Team
- RTE2 will again provide live coverage, as they have done for each of Irelands games in Group I so far. The game will also be available worldwide via the RTE Player
- Ireland have scheduled a friendly away to Serbia on April 14 – three days after their qualifier against Germany
Montenegro v Republic of Ireland
Wednesday, March 11
Pod Malim Brdom, Budva
Kick-Off: 15:00 (Irish Time)
Live on TV: RTÉ2
Referee: Maria Marotta (Italy)
Game Hashtag: #MNEIRL
Ireland Team Hashtag: #IRLWNT