Author Topic: Ireland Women’s team to host UEFA Cup holders Arsenal  (Read 2727 times)


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Ireland Women’s team to host UEFA Cup holders Arsenal
« on: January 16, 2008, 11:58:40 AM »

The Republic of Ireland Women’s squad will warm up for their vital UEFA Championship qualifying tie against Italy on February 16 by welcoming Arsenal to Dalymount Park for a friendly game on Thursday, February 7 (7.30pm).

The Gunners became the first British team to win the coveted trophy last April having defeated Swedish kingpins UMEA over two legs in the final. Republic of Ireland senior Internationals Emma Byrne, Ciara Grant and Yvonne Tracy were part of the victorious squad.

Ireland have made a splendid start in their UEFA qualifying series, winning three of the opening four fixtures, and share the leadership of Group 2 with Sweden and Italy on nine points.

However, manager Noel King recognises that the toughest challenges await his side. Ireland resume their competitive fixture list on February 16 by meeting the Italians in Sardinia, which will be followed by another away assignment against Hungary on April 23.

The reigning European club champions are certain to provide Ireland with a tough test which manager Noel King believes will be enormous benefit to his team.

“We need to play against quality opposition, such as Arsenal, to ensure we develop a sharpness going into the Italy match next month,” he said.

“To play against a top notch team like Arsenal just over a week ahead of the Italy game will help us achieve that.

“Arsenal have a team featuring the best players from across Britain and have a reputation for playing a stylish brand of football.

“I know it will be a difficult match but there is no point in organising easy games at this stage. Our only defeat in the group so far came against Italy last May when we lost 2-1 in Dublin, so the girls are keen to put that result right when we go to Sardinia in four weeks time.”

Offline Alan

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Re: Ireland Women’s team to host UEFA Cup holders Arsenal
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2008, 11:12:04 PM »
so who will Emma Byrne, Ciara Grant and Yvonne Tracy be playing for then?
Alltid. Uansett.


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Re: Ireland Women’s team to host UEFA Cup holders Arsenal
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2008, 11:04:20 AM »

This game was Noel King’s team final preparation game before they take on Italy in the crunch UEFA Group 2 qualifier in Sardinia on Saturday, 16th February.

The game began at lightening pace as Vic Akers side looked to take the game to the Irish early on, The Irish central defenders, Alisha Moran and Yvonne Tracy snuffed out any attacking play, reducing Arsenal to long shots from the edge of the box.

Ireland’s Ciara Grant had the best chance to open the scoring after 15 minutes, she connected with an Aine O’ Gorman corner, her header was save acrobatically by Quantrill in Arsenal’s goal.

After 24 minutes, Arsenal midfielder, Rachel Yankey made a dazzling run through the Irish midfield and she powerfully screwed the ball just to the left of Emma Byrne’s goal.

Emma Byrne came to Ireland’s rescue after 32 minutes when Arsenal’s Kelly Smith made a darting run through the Irish defence and she unleashed a shot from inside the box which was palmed away by Byrne.

Ten minutes into the second half, Arsenal had a golden chance to take the lead; Karen Carney’s freekick at the edge of the box was flicked towards goal by Faye White who saw her effort fly past Emma Byrne’s goal for a goal-kick.

Arsenal were pushing Noel King’s side back with a prolonged period of pressure in the Irish box, Emma Byrne was again on hand yet again to save a powerful and well-placed free kick to her right from the ever dangerous, Faye White. From the resulting break, substitute, Olivia O’ Toolle chased down a long ball from the Irish defence and she somehow managed to slide between Arsenal keeper, Sarah Quantrill and a defender to slot home the winner after 58 minutes, just over one minute after her introduction as a substitute.

Olivia O’ Toolle almost wrapped up the game in the 87th minute with an sublime individual effort, she controlled a long ball from the Irish defence and she unleashed a 25 yard strike which whizzed by the right hand post, much to the relief of the scrambling Quantrill in the Arsenal Goal.

Deep into injury time, Arsenal striker, Julie Fleeting thought she had earned her side a draw when she neatly slotted the ball into the net from a through-ball, to the relief of the Irish side, she scored from an off-side position.

Republic of Ireland: Emma Byrne, Emma Griffin, Sharon Boyle, Alisha Moran, Yvonne Tracy, Niamh Fahey, Ciara Grant, Aine O’ Gorman, Kate Taylor, Michele O’ Brien, Stefanie Curtis
Subs: Olivia O’ Toolle (on for Emma Griffin, 57 mins), Sonya Hughes (on for Yvonne Tracy, 57 mins), Lynn Marie Grant (on for Stefanie Curtis, 45 mins), Meabh De Burca (on for Kate Taylor 82 mins), Lynn Bradley, Noelle Murray, Grace Murray (on for Sharon Boyle, 57 mins)

Arsenal: Sarah Quantrill, Alex Scott, Jayne Ludlow, Faye White, Kelly Smith, Lianne Sanderson, Julie Fleeting, Rachel Yankey, Karen Carney, Gilly Flaherty, Anita Asante.
Subs: Gemma Davison (on for Lianne Sanderson, 60 mins), Felicienne Minnaar, Lizzy Wicks, Laura Coombs