Football

Ireland Player Ratings As Vera Pauw's Side Suffer World Cup Qualifying Loss

Ireland Player Ratings As Vera Pauw's Side Suffer World Cup Qualifying Loss

Just a first-half deflection off Louise Quinn separated the Republic of Ireland and the number two ranked side in the world at Tallaght Stadium.

While Ireland defended for most of the game and tried to hit Sweden on the break, they did put in a huge shift to be able to keep the margin down to one goal.

The final ten minutes sparked a bit of an uprising of sorts as Ireland saw a few chances waste away, and there were penalty calls from the home fans.

Nonetheless, it shows how far this team have come to be able to put it up to the world's best. The Swedes come away with three points, but Irish confidence should be high.

These ratings have been carried out with my special advisor, Tom Byrne. Tom is my father and a soccer coach in a past life. He's a longtime watcher of the Irish team and the WSL.

brosnan

GK - Courtney Brosnan - 9 

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The Republic of Ireland had plenty to contend with from an attacking point of view, and Courtney Brosnan was there to meet the Swedes at every turn. She was named player of the match after making some fine saves.

Tom's Verdict - "She was the player of the match. She didn't put a foot wrong."

DF - Niamh Fahey - 6 

Unfortunately for Fahey, she missed a tackle in the lead up to Blackstenius' deflected shot that ultimately led to the goal of the game. Could not question her effort throughout but was caught a few times.

Tom's Verdict - "Loses a point because she plays for Liverpool." (Editors note, Tom is an Everton fan)

DF - Louise Quinn - 7

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Proved to be a rock at the back as usual without doing anything too flashy. She was called upon numerous times to stick a head or a foot in. Deployed as a towering striker late on and that did lead to a chance.

Tom's Verdict - "You always expect her to win a header or two from corners but the Swedes were very big."

mccarthy quinn

DF - Savannah McCarthy - 7

McCarthy did well despite it being her first competitive appearance in an Ireland shirt. Like Quinn and Fahey, was asked upon time and time again to keep Sweden out. Put in a solid performance.

Tom's Verdict - "The only mistake I thought she made really was the nudge in a back that could have been a penalty. (The Swede) made a meal of it though."

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DF - Jamie Finn - 6

Finn was not helped by the fact that Blackstenius and the Swedish front three often attacked from wide and tried to cut in. She had a lot to contend with. Finn was lucky not give away a penalty in the first-half.

Tom's Verdict - "Was steady enough. Had a lot of work to do."

aine o gorman

DF - Áine O'Gorman - 8 

Ireland needed O'Gorman's experience in this game and she came up trumps. Was a busy body around the pitch and made a number of last-ditch tackles to stifle the Swedish attack. Sweden didn't make it easy on the wings.

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Tom's Verdict - "I'm a big fan of Aine O'Gorman. She'd sort of remind you of Seamus Coleman a little bit."

MF - Denise O'Sullivan - 8 

O'Sullivan was the heartbeat of the Irish attack against the break on numerous occasions, most notably putting in a lovely ball for Heather Payne in the first-half. Picked up an injury late on in an attempt in the Swede's box.

Tom's Verdict - "Put in a hell of a shift. I would have had her up as one of the best."

MF - Megan Connolly - 7

We vitally needed a defensive presence in this game and Connolly did her job well. Was a bit quiet in the first-half but came to life in the final ten minutes, winning balls and providing for the attack.

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Tom's Verdict - "It took her a long time to find her feet. But she was closing down a lot of space at the same time."

Katie McCabe

MF - Katie McCabe - 8 

The Irish captain had some moments of brilliance in the game but some of her delivery wasn't there. On the ball, she looked as comfortable as any player on the pitch, and had a great spell in the first-half in particular.

Tom's Verdict - "I always expect a little bit more of her."

MF - Lucy Quinn - 7 

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After having a dream debut against Australia, the bar was set high for Quinn against Sweden. Her usual attack minded play had to be substituted for the benefit of the team, as she dropped back into midfield to help out.

Tom's verdict - "She did an awful lot of work in our own half. Picking up balls. slowing things down."

FW - Heather Payne - 7

Payne was used almost as a standalone attacking option and had a great first-half giving Sweden some pressure. Her pace was evident but the imposing physicality of the Swedish defense got the better of her at times.

Tom's Verdict - "She had a thankless job up front. They were very big defenders she was up against."

See Also: Republic Of Ireland Edged By Sweden In Tallaght With Unfortunate Own Goal

ireland

Jonathan Byrne

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