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Ireland Under-16s suffer defeat in Victory Shield opener

WREXHAM, WALES – Monday, October 28, 2019: Scotland’s Josh Adam scores the third goal from a free-kick as Republic of Ireland’s captain Darragh Reilly , Ben Curtis, Edwin Agbaje, and James Abankwah form a defensive wall during the 2019 Victory Shield match between Republic of Ireland and Scotland at Colliers Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)
Scotland’s Josh Adam scores the third goal from a free-kick as Ireland’s captain Darragh Reilly, Ben Curtis, Edwin Agbaje, and James Abankwah form a defensive wall – Picture by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda
The Republic of Ireland Under-16 side suffered a 4-0 defeat in their opening game of the Victory Shield in Wrexham, Wales on Monday.
 
Kieran Offord struck in each half for Scotland with Adedire Mebude and Josh Adams also finding the net.
 
It was a tough afternoon for Paul Osam’s team who were heading into the game looking to better last year’s Under-16s second-place finish in the same competition.
 
The opening stages of the game were an even contest with Ireland enjoying most of the ball and finding Scotland difficult to break down.
 
Scotland looked to hit Ireland on the counter attack with John Ryan and skipper Darragh Reilly called into action to clear danger from the Scottish threat.
 
Ireland also asked questions of the opposition. A free-kick by Bohemians Cian Kelly drew a smart save by Murray Johnson in the Scotland goal before the ball was cleared.
 
Tom Lonergan was Ireland’s biggest threat. He shot wide on 22 minutes then shortly after his excellent run created an opportunity for Glory Nzingo but the St Patrick’s Athletic man’s effort was blocked.
 
On 35 minutes it was Scotland who took the lead. A counter attack down the right saw the ball worked into the box and Kieran Offord was on hand to tap in from close range.
 
And early on in the second half it was 2-0 to Scotland. Mebude found room at the far post to double his side’s lead with an easy finish.
 
Lonergan had a chance to get Ireland back in the game but his one-on-one was thwarted by Johnson. And not long after that chance Scotland made it three. A free kick on the edge of the area was converted by Adams who found the bottom corner.
 
On 67 minutes Offord made it 4-0 to Scotland. He found himself in a two-on-one situation and was able to convert past Aaron Maguire.
 
Substitute John Joe Power had an opportunity to claw a goal back for Ireland but again Johnson was on hand to deny Paul Osam’s team who couldn’t find the break through their play deserved.
 
Ireland: Maguire (GK) (Byrne 68); Abankwah (Fogarty 60), Grehan (O’Reilly 68), Reilly (C); Curtis, Barrett (Mullins 41), Nzingo (Leddy 41); Agbaje (Power 60), Kelly, Lonergan (O’Sullivan 68).
 
Scotland: Johnson (GK); McPherson, Anderson (Semple 60), K. Ewen, H. Ewen (Flatman 47); Reid, Adam, Letosa, Brooks (C) (Andreucci 52), Mebude (Strachan 60)
 
Referee: Nick Pratt
 
Fixtures
October, 30 – Wales v Ireland, Colliers Park, Wrexham, Wales, KO 2pm
November, 1 – Ireland v Northern Ireland, Colliers Park, Wrexham Wales, KO 12pm

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