“The best feeling I’ve had in football”

Parrott amended

Troy Parrott said it was the best feeling he’s had in football and enjoyed the occasion as he played an important role in Ireland’s 3-1 come-from-behind win over New Zealand tonight.

The Dubliner provided an assist for Seáni Maguire to give Ireland the lead in the second-half.

Troy said he felt he played well.

The manager congratulated him on debut, the 17 year-old said: “It was unbelievable just to be out there.”

He says this experience will benefit him in the Under-21s, “if I go back down.”

“I felt unlucky that I didn’t come away with a goal but I’m happy to get an assist.”

Parrott says he’s happy with the strides he’s made this season and hopes to advance more this season and force his way into the Spurs starting XI.






Deserved come-from-behind win for Ireland as former Cork City man Maguire nets first Ireland goal in a man-of-the-match performance

MaguireDespite undeservedly going behind on the half-hour, Derrick Williams with a towering header, Seáni Maguire with another cracker from distance and Callum Robinson also with his first international goal sealed a deserved win for Ireland.

The All-Whites kicked off against Ireland who are wearing a smart new all-bottle green kit.

Troy Parrott becomes, at 17, the youngest Irish international since Robbie Keane in an Irish side hoping to find a solution to a goalscoring problem never really resolved since Keane’s retirement.

Parrott has a couple of early involvements but he is on the end of some heavy handed Kiwi defending.

Parrott is put through on goal in the fifth minute but he is flagged for offside before he can play the ball past visiting keeper Marinovic.

Jack Byrne looks lively, seeking – and getting the ball regularly and pinging good 10-15 yard passes.

A nice ball around the corner from Browne finds Williams who should have scored but he plays his 15 yard effort well wide.

Ireland have a penalty shout on 17 minutes when, following a free-flowing move, Byrne finds Brady who plays in Parrott who is shoved in the back by Boxall. Referee Robert Jenkins waves play on however to the anger of the home crowd.

Maguire is played in by a good long ball over the top from Long which is misjudged by Boxall but the goalkeeper makes a good stop. The ball falls to Williams but nothing comes of it.

Ireland should be at least one up midway through the first half. Ireland goalkeeper Kieran O’Hara must be feeling the chill.

Byrne has a chance when played in by Parrott but can’t convert from ten yards out.

Williams makes a great last ditch tackle and O’Hara punches clear the follow-up as the All-Whites make their first penetrative attack in the 26th minute.

New Zealand take the lead very much against the run of play on the half hour when Wood finds Cacace who plays the ball across for Callum McCowatt to tap into the empty net from eight yards out and score on his debut.

Brady plays a high ball into the six yard box but Maguire was never likely to win the header.

Maguire then comes close from an unmarked header six yard out but his effort flashes a yard wide.

Derrick Williams scores a deserved equalizer for Ireland on the stroke of half-time with a towering header from Brady’s corner from eight yards out into the bottom corner of the net.

Seáni Maguire scores his first senior international goal early in the second half. When a scramble just outside the box finds the former Cork City man he finds the top corner of the net from more than 20 yards out.

Callum O’Dowda comes on for goalscorer Williams after 55 minutes.

Byrne finds Maguire in acres of space before he’s closed down but he plays in Parrott. The advancing Marinovic does very well to block the Dubliner’s effort.

On the hour mark, Thomas runs through the heart of the Irish defence, avoiding two would be tacklers before striking a tame-ish 20 yard effort which O’Hara scoops into danger but O’Connor clears.

Another pair of substitutions for the home side as Robinson and Judge replace Parrott and Byrne on 62 minutes.

Goalkeeper Marinovic makes another good save from Maguire who had more time than he realised when found in space ten yards out.

The changes continue as goalkeeper O’Hara makes way for Mark Travers and it’s one Corkman for another as Conor Hourihane replaces Alan Browne on 65 minutes.

Marinovic forced into another save, this time from Robinson, though he would have been disappointed to be beaten at his near post.

Goascorer Maguire is replaced in the 73rd minute by James Collins as New Zealand make a pair of substitutions themselves.

Robinson wraps up the win with his first goal for Ireland in the 75th minute with a close range header from a fantastic O’Connor cross.

Travers is forced into a late save. Meanwhile it’s opposite number Marinovic who was definitely New Zealand’s best player on the night as Seáni Maguire earns the man of the match award, though it was a very good display all round by Ireland.

All eyes now turn to Monday night and the make-or-break clash with old rivals Denmark. How many of tonight’s team will feature in four days’ time? Probably not many but manager Mick McCarthy definitely has options going into that game.

Republic of Ireland: Kieran O’Hara (Mark Travers 65); Lee O’Connor, Kevin Long, Ciaran Clark, Derrick Williams (Callum O’Dowda 55 mins); Alan Browne (Conor Hourihane 65), Jack Byrne (Alan Judge 62), Josh Cullen, Robbie Brady (c); Troy Parrott (Callum Robinson 62), Seáni Maguire (James Collins 73).

New Zealand: Marinovic, Reid (c), Cacace, Boxall, Bell, Wood, Singh, McCowatt, Thomas (McGlinchey 75), Roux, Just.

Attendance: 18,728

Referee: Robert Jenkins (Wales)

Mick McCarthy names Irish starting team 24 hours before New Zealand friendly; Parrott and Byrne to start

Mick McCarthy will send a much-changed Republic of Ireland side into friendly fare against unfamiliar foe New Zealand (it’s the first time Ireland have played the Kiwis) tomorrow night with one eye on Monday’s UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying showdown with Denmark.

McCarthy has taken what is for him the unusual step of naming his starting XI some 24 hours before the match. The fact that this lineup is quite exciting and therefore might attract more people to attend, might be part of the reason.

Seventeen-year-old Troy Parrott will start at the Aviva Stadium tomorrow.

Celtic’s Lee O’Connor will also be pitched in for his senior international debut, while Shamrock Rovers playmaker Jack Byrne will get to build on his September cameo against Bulgaria by figuring in the starting XI.

There will be particular attention on Parrott, who will be the youngest player to make his debut since Robbie Keane was thrown in against Czech Republic by Mick McCarthy in 1998.

McCarthy says it’s too early to make bold statements about Parrott, while stressing that he had impressed in training with one turn and shot on the Abbotstown pitch on Tuesday, which gave an indication that he was “something special.”

The Irish manager said: “It doesn’t take a special kind to be pitched in. It takes a special kind to thrive, to do well, to make a good impression and impress everybody. I hope that’s going to be the case with Troy.

“He’s a bright, intelligent footballer who is good with the ball at his feet. I think he’s found it tough enough, the sessions. He was understandably breathing hard after he trained with us. He hasn’t played in a few weeks (since scoring four v Red Star Belgrade on October 22 in the UEFA Youth League).”

McCarthy will also give first starts to Kieran O’Hara and Josh Cullen tomorrow night.

Speaking of full debutant Jack Byrne, McCarthy said: “It’s not Denmark by any stretch of the imagination but New Zealand are treating it as a big international game and for Jack it will be, to showcase what he’s got. He’s done so much better in the last 12 months, in terms of his all round game. Maybe I’ve influenced it and TC (Terry Connor) has.”

Republic of Ireland starting XI v New Zealand:
Kieran O’Hara; Lee O’Connor, Kevin Long, Ciaran Clark, Derrick Williams; Josh Cullen, Jack Byrne, Alan Browne, Robbie Brady; Troy Parrott, Seáni Maguire. 

Cork City’s Oran Crowe among 14 League of Ireland players in Ireland Under-17 squad

Cork City underage man Oran Crowe is included in Colin O’Brien’s Republic Of Ireland U17 squad for the European Championship qualifying games on Leeside this week.

Ireland will play three games at Turner’s Cross, against Andorra (tomorrow), Montenegro (Friday) and Israel (next Monday), as they bid to advance to the Elite Round of the competition, with the ultimate aim to qualify for the European U17 Championships in Estonia.

City legend O’Brien has named a 20-man squad. Forteeen of the players selected ply their trade with SSE Airtricity League clubs.

Irish U17 boss O’Brien, who spent 13 years on Leeside with Cork City, said: “This is a good team and each of them are here on merit. We’ve been assessing players that have come through our underage teams as well as those playing in the National League.

“We had a double-header in September against a very strong Russia team and that really pleased me and in October we had a training camp and in all we’ve looked at around 40 players. Tayo [Adaramola] joined us for training and I’m pleased that he’ll be a part of the squad.”

O’Brien also spoke about Ireland’s opponents. “You can never under estimate the opposition. You can come up against a nation that has very strong group at underage level so you can’t take anything for granted.

“Andorra, Montenegro and Israel will have different footballing cultures and tournament football presents those challenges. You have to be ready to prepare for a different style in a tight time frame.”

Fans can pay at the turnstiles at Turner’s Cross.

Admission to the games are €5 for adults and free for U16s.

Cork City, Cobh Ramblers and FAI season ticket holders can gain free access to the games by showing their season tickets at the turnstiles.

Republic of Ireland U17 squad:

Goalkeepers: Josh Keeley (St Patrick’s Athletic), Daniel Rose (Everton)

Defenders: Gavin O’Brien (Bohemians), Oisín Hand (Shamrock Rovers), Daragh Reilly (St Patrick’s Athletic), Anselmo Garcia McNulty (Wolfsburg), Leigh Kavanagh (Bray Wanderers) Tayo Adaramola (Crystal Palace).

Midfielders: Colin Conroy (Bohemians), Kyle Conway (St Patrick’s Athletic), Oran Crowe (Cork City), Andrew Moran (Bray Wanderers), Ben McCormack (St Patrick’s Athletic), Olabosun Lawal (Watford)

Forwards: Kailin Barlow (Sligo Rovers), Evan Ferguson (Bohemians), Robert Mahon (Bohemians), Sinclair Armstrong (Shamrock Rovers) Calum Kavanagh (Middlesbrough), Oliver O’Neill (Fulham).


TOMORROW: Ireland v Andorra, Turner’s Cross, 7.30pm.

FRIDAY: Ireland v Montenegro, Turner’s Cross, 7.30pm.

MONDAY: Ireland v Israel, Turner’s Cross, 2pm.