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Ireland U21s continue perfect start to qualifiers for the European Championships

A convincing win for Noel King’s men this evening in Waterford.

Callum O'Dowda celebrates scoring with his teammates Ireland players celebrate Callum O'Dowda's opener. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND senior boss Martin O’Neill and assistant manager Roy Keane were in attendance as the Irish U21s made it three wins out of three in their qualifying campaign for the 2017 European Championships.

After starting with back-to-back wins against Andorra, Noel King’s recorded a 3-0 victory against Lithuania this evening at the RSC in Waterford.

Ireland took the lead in the 27th minute, with Oxford United’s Callum O’Dowda providing a nice volleyed finish to Josh Cullen’s cross.

21S GOAL

Conor Wilkinson doubled Ireland’s advantage just three minutes later when Lithuanian goalkeeper Edvinas Gertmonas fumbled the Barnsley striker’s shot from just outside the box.

SECOND

Preston North End midfielder Alan Browne scored from close range in the 77th minute to make it 3-0 to the hosts.

Browne

Next up for the Irish is a difficult trip to Vicenza on Tuesday to play Italy, who have started their campaign with a pair of wins against Slovenia.

“This was a pleasing performance and it’s excellent to get another clean sheet. People may have been looking to Italy but we weren’t. We were very focused on this game,” said Republic of Ireland U21 manager Noel King.

“There were lots of good performances but the collective effort was excellent and we are starting to play with confidence. It’s early days yet but we’ve got the start we wanted in the group.”

Ireland: Daniel Rogers, Sean Long, Jack Connors, Darragh Lenihan, Glen Rea (Shane Griffin 79), Alan Browne (Henry Charsley 82), Callum O’Dowda, Josh Cullen, Conor Wilkinson (Dylan Connolly 65), Jack Byrne, Sean Kavanagh.

Lithuania: Edvinas Gertmonas, Julius Aleksandravičius, Lukas Artimavičius, Lukas Čerkauskas, Tomas Dombrauskis (Rokas Krušnauskas 82), Rokas Stanulevičius (Karolis Šilkaitis 46), Simonas Stankevičius, Skirmantas Rakauskas (Daniel Romanovskij 46), Sigitas Urbys, Aurimas Tručinskas, Donatas Šėgžda.

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