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Monday 30 January 2023 Dublin: 8°C
Stéphane Guillaume/INPHO Dawson Devoy of Ireland (file pic).
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It's 'win or bust' for Ireland on Tuesday
Dawson Devoy admits the Boys in Green must beat Sweden to keep any realistic hopes of qualification alive.

DAWSON DEVOY admits it’s “win or bust” as Ireland U21s take on Sweden on Tuesday at Tallaght Stadium.

A 2-0 defeat at home to Italy on Friday left them seven points behind the table-topping Swedes and six adrift of the Azzurri.

While qualification would still be mathematically possible, a defeat would all but end Jim Crawford’s side’s hopes of progression.

Asked on Friday whether the game was win or bust, Devoy said: “Yeah, that’s it. We knew it would be tough tonight to get three points, but now we know we have to [play] Sweden and beat them. 

“We’ll prepare properly tomorrow and recover well, and go into that trying to get the three points.”

On what went wrong against Italy, the 19-year-old attacking midfielder added: “I think we started okay. Italy are a very good side. And they showed it at stages of the game where they just played it around us. We knew that was going to happen. 

“Things just didn’t go our way and then Italy got the second goal and killed the game in the end.

“We knew before the game, they’re a really good side. They were good tonight. I thought we did well to stay in the game.”

Along with Bohs teammate Ross Tierney, Devoy was introduced against the Italians in the 76th minute with the game still in the balance at 1-0.

The pair almost made a big impact, as Devoy’s free-kick was helped on by Joel Bagan into the path of Tierney for Ireland’s best chance of the match.

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However, the visitors’ goalkeeper Marco Camesecchi was alert and got down really well to deny the League of Ireland star from close range.

“Yeah, Ross’ chance at the end. Sometimes they go in, sometimes they don’t. It was some save from the ‘keeper as well. You saw Rossie last Sunday [against Drogheda], he scores two goals, today he was just unlucky.

“It’s tough getting to the level of the game [after coming off the bench late in the second half] especially when you’re playing against a team that keeps the ball really well. But I think you just have to adjust and get up to the speed of the game quickly.”

And does Devoy feel he has done enough to earn a starting spot for Tuesday’s crucial game?

“That’s up to the manager. We all trust him. He puts out what he thinks is the best XI for tonight and it’ll be the same on Tuesday.”

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