30 June 2009
Irelandís women opened up their World University Games campaign in Belgrade with a 3-0 loss to Japan, in the morning fixture at the FC Zeleznik stadium.
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The team will be disappointed in losing this fixture, having put up a strong fight in the first half, they fell away conceding all the goals in the second half.
Manager Sue Ronan said: "I'm disappointed for the girls to be honest I don't think they deserved a 3-0 score line. We worked hard and matched them for an hour . But they are technically very good and when tiredness started to creep in you saw the mistakes being made.
"We can take the positives out of it and there are a lot of positives in the game we played."
The Japanese had the best of the chances of the opening exchanges, with Japan's number 10, Matsuda Noriko, causing the Irish defence all sorts of problems. She had four great chances in the first half, blazing two volleys over from inside the box and having a header hit the post. She also had the ball in the net but was offside from the chance.
Mary Waldron worked tirelessly up front and created Ireland's best chance of the half striking a right foot shoot into the keeper's arms from the edge of the box.
In the second half Japan picked up from where they left off in the first, but it was Ireland who almost drew first blood.
On the 50 minute mark, Isokane Midori slipped on the ball at the edge of the box. Mary Waldron pounced and unleashed an rasping shot heading for the top left corner, only for the keeper to pull off a spectacular finger-tip save.
"It was a world-class save," said Ronan. "It was a great strike and fantastic save. One that any senior men's keeper would have been proud of."
From the resulting corner Ireland had the ball cleared off the line twice - once directly from the corner kick and the second a Louise Quinn header.
It was just seven minutes later however that Japan took the lead. A blocked Matsuda shot fell to Otaki Ami inside the box who hammered the ball high past Bronagh Sheridan, deputising for the injured Tiarna McKenna in the Irish goal.
Ireland fell asleep at the back again to let Japan in for their second. Just after the hour when failure to clear the ball left Otaki Ami free to put the ball low to Sheridan's right, for her second.
Ireland struggled to regain the promise they had showed at the start of the second half and the third goal was the nail in the coffin for the Irish girls.
On the 75 minute mark the speedy Nakade Hikari broke into the box from the right and scored with a fantastic strike high to the near post.
Next up for the Irish woman is Hungary on Thursday at the FC Jakavo stadium.
Ireland Team - Bronagh Sheridan, Amanda Parkes, Grace Murray, Rachel Furness, Louise Quinn, Niamh Mulcahy, Rachel Jenkins, Mary Waldron, Sarah McGrath, Lynn-Marie Grant, Aoife Herbert
Article from www.cusai.ie
|Referee||SRB - Kuzmanovic Gordana||4th Official||POL - Radzik Karolina|
|Assistant Referee 1||SRB - Mihajlovic Milan||Assistant Referee 2||SRB - Lucic Igor|
|Match Commissioner||SRB - Miljkovic Miodrag|
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2Y=R 2nd Yellow = Red Card FC Fouls Committed FS Fouls Suffered GA Goals Against
GF Goals For GK Goalkeeper Min Minutes Played PK Penalty Kicks (Goals/Shots)
Pos Position R Expulsions (Red Cards) S Substitute SG/S Shots on Goal/Shots
Y Cautions (Yellow Cards)