Women’s U19 finals
Clare Shine secured a memorable victory as the Republic of Ireland beat Spain 1-0 on their Uefa Women’s U19 Championship debut in Oslo, Norway, last night.
Dave Connell’s side, set up in a 4-3-3 formation, dominated play and stretched Spain regularly. But they exhaled a sigh of relief when Sonia Fraile’s overhead only struck the post.
Ireland responded by going close with Megan Connolly’s free-kick from 30 yards out whistling over the crossbar before Shine twice fired just off target to finish the first half on a high.
Upon returning for the second period, Shine again had Spain goalkeeper Sara Serrat sweating as she found her way beyond opposition defenders to drill a shot wide of the goal.
Persistence paid off for Ireland as they took the lead on 54 minutes when Rowe’s cross was hooked clear to Cork girl Shine who controlled the ball before converting with a stinging shot.
This historic victory sets Ireland up for Friday’s Group B showdown with England before a final group game against Sweden.
REPUBLIC OF IRELAND: Dunne; Wright, O’Connell, McCarthy, Mustaki; O’Connor, Dwyer, Connolly; McCabe, Shine (Carson 89), Rowe.
Referee: Karolina Radzik-Johan (Poland).
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