Monday, June 17, 2024

Sweden 1 Ireland 0 (FT) – as it happened

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Sweden 1 Ireland 0 (FT)

We bid you adieu with Mary Hannigan’s match report. Be sure to switch over to our men’s live blog to catch how John O’Shea and co get on against Hungary.

Giants Stadium stuff at the centre of defence, heading countless balls away and organising those around her. Always seemed to be in the right place to cut off through balls and snuff out the Swedes. Rating: 8

—  Malachy Clerkin

Malachy Clerkin was full of praise for Caitlin Hayes in his player ratings.

Full-time: Sweden 1 Ireland 0

Disappointment for Eileen Gleeson and co. For 85 minutes or so, their defensive discipline was much better than what we saw on Friday, particularly when defending counter-attacks. However, despite some heroics from Brosnan and Hayes – who should have been named as the Irish player of the match by RTÉ, instead Ziu got the honour – some sloppy work from a corner cost them dear.

That’s now four consecutive defeats for Ireland in this group, while they have yet to find the back of the net either. The last time Ireland scored was against Northern Ireland last year.

Stay tuned for Mary Hannigan’s match report.

90+3 mins: SAVE! Barrett cuts in onto her left foot to open up a shot but it’s a tame effort straight at the ‘keeper. That is probably the last chance for Ireland and so it proves, there goes the full-time whistle.

Three minutes to be added on here.

90 mins: CLOSE! It’s long ball and all hands on deck for Ireland with the centre backs hovering up in the box. Hayes gets her head on a cross which loops invitingly for Stapleton. She takes a punch in the back of the head from Musovic for her trouble as the ‘keeper clears. The offside flag has also gone up against Stapleton.

Here is that Eriksson goal. Perhaps it’s harsh on Brosnan to say she should have dealt with it given the bodies in her way, but you still can’t be rooted to the spot as a ‘keeper when the ball comes into the six-yard box.


Ireland’s rearguard has been broken! Andersson’s corner is swung dangerously into the six yard box. Brosnan probably should come to claim but she doesn’t. Jakobsson has her back to the ball after missing it completely, but it flicks her back on its way into the net. A bizarre goal, but a sloppy one for Ireland to concede given how strong they’ve been defensively up to now.

83 mins: The no-look pass from Kafaji is sensational. Jakobsson is in on goal as a result but who’s there to clean up for Ireland? Hayes once again. If this stays at 0-0, she’s a dead cert for player of the match.

79 mins: Two changes for Ireland. Kiernan has been cramping up and is duly replaced by Barrett. Lucy Quinn is also on for Jess Ziu.

74 mins: That sums up Ireland’s night nicely. Jakobsson’s cross towards the near post is very dangerous. A combination of Patten and Hayes do enough to prevent a clear shot before Brosnan cleans up the defensive job.

70 mins: Eriksson might be a bit lucky there. Ziu’s pass forward to Kiernan allows Ireland to break into space. Kiernan beats Eriksson to the ball and goes down under a heavy challenge. If she wasn’t already on a yellow, Eriksson could well have seen a card there. That could easily have been a second yellow and a red.

68 mins: Half a chance! This time an Irish cross finds a teammate in the box. Ziu sends the ball in from out wide where Kiernan gets a foot on it. However, swarmed by three defenders, she can’t find the target.

66 mins: Once again, Ireland’s final ball is lacking. Kiernan gets to the byline but, with Larkin waiting in the middle, the cross races behind her.

Meanwhile McCabe is booked for a cynical foul as Sweden break. That card rules her out of Ireland’s game with England in July.

64 mins: Sweden now look more content to take shots at Brosnan from distance. Rolfo first of all tries her luck, only to come up with nothing but fresh air. Angeldahl follows up but her effort blazes harmlessly over.

59 mins: Janogy’s movement continues to cause problem. The quick turn with a delicate touch off the heel takes Janogy past Patten who proceeds to haul her down cynically. Yellow card.

57 mins: Rinse and repeat. Janogy once again is beaten to a dangerous ball but is caught offside. On second viewing, Ireland’s high line is a risk but it works twice there.

Meanwhile, Eileen Gleeson is making some changes. Littlejohn replaced by Jess Stapleton, Agg is gone with Abbie Larkin replacing here. Jess Ziu will take up Agg’s central position, you’d imagine, with Larkin moving out wide.

56 mins: Sweden come forward again. Janogy is in on goal if Asllani gets her pass right but she doesn’t. Brosnan comes off her line to get to an overhit effort first. It wouldn’t have mattered, a delayed offside flag going up against Janogy.

54 mins: HOW HAS THAT NOT GONE IN? Mannion has a bit of a nightmare, taking two touches inside her own box when trying to clear a ball in. Rolfo stooks her boot in with Mannion dithering and the ball deflects towards the Irish goal at pace. Miraculously for Ireland, it ends up going straight at Brosnan who parries and then regathers. Ireland are hanging on by a thread here.

52 mins: SAVE! Not for the first time, Brosnan saves Ireland. A dangerous free-kick is sent into the box where Janogy beats her marker. The header is a strong one but Brosnan is able to make the save at full stretch.

49 mins: Sweden come forward for the first time in the half. Rolfo sends the ball into the area but, once again, Hayes is there to deal with the danger.

45 mins: We’re back underway in Sweden. No further changes at half-time it looks. Ireland start the half with the ball as as Leanne Kiernan takes the kick-off.

Ireland started by looking very threatening on the counter, Jess Ziu, Kyra Carusa and Leanne Kiernan linking nicely. However, after the first 20 minutes, Sweden have settled nicely, with Kaneryd proving a particular nuisance down the right.

If anything, those in a more central position have been disappointing in their inability to get on the end of her delivery. Rolfo has been especially wasteful, though Hayes and Brosnan have offered plenty in Ireland’s rearguard.

Half-time: Sweden 0 Ireland 0

Nothing of note during injury time. Ireland hold their hosts thanks largely to Brosnan in goal and Hayes in front of her and the ability to be a nuisance inside her own box.

There will be four additional minutes at the end of the first half.

44 mins: Rolfo should have done better. Asllani’s through ball is a beauty, perfectly weighted to send Rolfo into the box. The first touch, though, is poor, allowing the ball to run out of play for a goal kick. If she got that right, she was odds on with a one-on-one against Brosnan.

43 mins: Hayes has been quietly excellent at disrupting Swedish attacks inside the box. This time, she gets to the near pass to cut out a dangerous cross after Kaneryd once again caused problems down the right.

41 mins: Well this isn’t good news. She wasn’t readily limping but Louise Quinn has been subbed off. Anna Patten is on. It has to be an injury, but I’m not sure what the problem was.

38 mins: Ireland have an issue with being caught offside. McCabe’s first time ball to send Kiernan away on the counter is a good one. Carusa needs to time her run better off the last defender but she can’t, meaning the assistant’s flag goes up after Kiernan’s dangerous pass.

35 mins: Not the first time we’ve seen this, but it’s still funny. Brosnan takes a seat, asking the referee to let the physios come on. As a goalkeeper, she doesn’t need to leave the pitch to receive treatment. The break allows the Ireland players to go to the sideline and take instruction from Gleeson. Meanwhile Brosnan gets an ice pack dragged across her knee and is magically good to go.

32 mins: Ireland continue to sporadically break forward but they are lacking that quality in the final third. Carusa initially has a cross blocked before her second effort has too much on it for Ziu to try and get a header on goal. That’s the difference between the two sides. Both have no issues constructing attacks, but Sweden are much more threatening on Brosnan’s goal.

30 mins: Janogy nearly opens up an angle for a strike. Hayes, though, does enough to disrupt and get the ball clear. Sweden are pushing hard for the opener here. Ireland holding on, just about.

26 mins: SAVE! Rolfo does just enough to open up space for a shot while battling with Louise Quinn. It’s a powerful strike and it takes a strong hand from Brosnan to push it over the bar.

Brosnan misses the ball when trying to come for the corner but Hayes is there to head clear.

24 mins: CHANCE! That could have gone anywhere. Musovic isn’t convincing in trying to punch clear a McCabe corner. It falls to Megan Connolly at the edge of the box. She fires first time only for a deflection to take it behind, via an Irish boot, for a goal-kick. That could easily have snuck through the pile of bodies.

22 mins: Ziu, Carusa and Kiernan link well to send the Liverpool forward into space down the right. She sends in a cross but it’s too strong, flying over the head of Carusa who had gotten goalside of her marker. Poor final ball, but promising build-up from Ireland.

20 mins: CHANCE! Best opportunity for either side so far. Kaneryd whips a ball into the box, she has been threatening down that right hand side. Rolfo runs from deep to beat Mannion to the ball in the air, but she blazes over from six yards out. Should have hit the target.

18 mins: Angeldahl puts in an inviting cross into the Irish box. Brosnan, though, reads it well and comes to claim through a pile of bodies. A confidence boost after her nervy moment minutes earlier.

17 mins: Sweden getting into things more having allowed Ireland to look dangerous on the counter early on. They’re having plenty of joy progressing through the middle of the park, albeit without creating many clearcut chances yet.

11 mins: A nervy moment for Brosnan in the Irish goal. Her touch when dealing with a backpass was heavy, allowing Asllani to pressure. The Swedish skipper does block Brosnan’s attempted clearance, but fortunately for Ireland it goes out for a goalkick instead of somewhere more dangerous.

A lengthy delay here as Leane Kieran receives treatment. She took a nasty, albeit accidental bang to the face when competing for the ball in the air. The cotton buds are being shoved right up her nose to stem the bleeding.

6 mins: CHANCE! Asllani lets fly from inside the box but the shot is partially blocked. The referee then spots a foul on an Irish defender. That was a decent chance but Ireland came across well to close down the space.

4 mins: Half a shout for a penalty! Ziu plays Agg into the box nicely with a pass from out wide. Agg shows strength to keep goal side of her marker and, under a stern challenge she does go down. A handful of the Irish players appeal to the referee but Agg herself didn’t seem perturbed.

1 min: Less than 30 seconds in and we already have a card. Eriksson cynically hauls down Jess Ziu with the Ireland full-back already having easily beaten her for pace down the flank. Eriksson knows exactly what she’s doing, sticking out an arm to haul Ziu down by the shoulder and she is duly shown a yellow card.

1 min: We’re underway in Stockholm! Ireland start without the ball, playing right to left as you look at it on your TV screen in their customary green strip.

Sweden will start with possession, they’re back in their yellow shirts after displaying their away blue on Friday.

Right then, the teams are out, the anthems are done and it’s almost time for kick-off.

There’s one change to the Swedish XI which started on Friday. Lundkvist replaced Bjorn at half-time then, and she does so in the starting line-up tonight.

Ireland cruised through their Nations League campaign last year, flooring Albania, Hungary and Northern Ireland, but oh my, this step up is a whopper. They’re competing, but they’re nowhere close thus far to pointing.

—  Mary Hannigan

Mary Hannigan puts Ireland’s campaign – in a group with England, France and Sweden – into context so far. At what point to the defeats go from expected to concerning?

The Ireland team is in. There are changes, three of them to be precise. Liverpool striker Leanne Kiernan replaces Amber Barrett, while Aoife Mannion comes in for Anna Patten. Ruesha Littlejohn is also straight in after recovering from injury, Jess Stapleton is the third Irish player to drop out.

In case you missed Friday’s game, Mary Hannigan has an analysis of how Ireland keep getting caught on the counter-attack when trying to be positive against these higher-ranked sides. In three qualifying games so far, Ireland have conceded six times without troubling the scorers themselves.

The balance between positivity and respecting the opposition’s attacking quality is not working so far.

There have been so many changes to the Republic of Ireland line-up since their 1-1 draw in Gothenburg two years ago, a result that was among their finest ever away from home and one that sent them on the path to World Cup qualification, that that game holds little relevance to Tuesday’s meeting with Sweden in Stockholm.

—  Mary Hannigan

Let’s kick things off with some reading material. Mary Hannigan is our reporter on the ground in Sweden and she points to the lack of overlap between this Irish side and the one which secured a draw in Sweden two years ago.

The XI could well change again with Gleeson reporting a clean bill of health in the squad, meaning Ruesha Littlejohn has recovered and Katie McCabe’s apparent hamstring tweak at the end of Friday’s game was nothing serious.

The full Irish line-up will be announced around one hour before kick-off. Meanwhile, you can read Mary’s full preview below.

Good evening all and welcome to another summer night of football action. For the second time in four days, Ireland and Sweden meet, this time in Stockholm after the Swede’s romped to victory in Dublin.

Can Ireland finally secure a point in this Euro qualifying campaign? Can Eileen Gleeson’s side find the back of the net for the first time in four matches and arrest a run of three consecutive defeats to start in this group of death? Away from home against a side which finished third at last year’s World Cup and beat them only last week, expectations aren’t exactly high.

We’ll be building up to the kick-off time of 5.30pm (Irish time) over the next few hours.

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