Ireland Suffer Big Defeat

Thursday November 27, 2014 at 9:54pm

Ireland’s tough miniEURO campaign continued when they were thumped 9-2 by a rampant Croatia side in Igalo tonight.

Outside the weather might have been placid and calm by the Mediterranean coast, but Lee Kill’s young side found themselves blown away by the Croatian storm and found themselves 5-0 down inside the first 14 minutes.

That soon became six by half time as the well-drilled Croatian’s – finalists last time around – simply proved too experienced for the Irish lads.

At 2-0 down Paddy Cahill had Ireland’s best chance of the half, forcing the Croat custodian into an excellent save with a header, but it was typical of the lack of luck from the Irish that their opponents simply broke away and added a third.

The second half continued in the same fashion and Croatia soon added a seventh, but to their immense credit, the Irish summoned up the desire and pride to keep going, and first Dylan Kennedy then the ever willing Damien Raggett went close to opening their account for the competition.

The pressure did pay off and Emmet Nugent kept his composure to drill low past the keeper.
It was raining goals by this point, as first Croatia added an eighth on the break, before Paddy Cahill slotted home a second, then only a miraculous save prevented Nugent from adding his second his team’s third on the half hour. Croatia added a ninth with a few minutes remaining and the remainder of the game passed without incident.

Ireland will reflect no doubt on lessons learned in what for all these players was a first experience of miniEURO, and a very tough draw. They can still look to bag a morale-boosting victory against Italy tomorrow at midday CET

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