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Ireland U21s finish their European Championship qualifying campaign with another defeat

Serbia beat the Boys in Green 3-1 in Waterford.

Tonight's loss was Ireland's six defeat of the campaign.
Tonight's loss was Ireland's six defeat of the campaign.
Image: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Ireland U21 1

Serbia U21 3

Serbia came back from a goal down to inflict a sixth European Championship qualifying defeat on Ireland, to complete a miserable campaign for the Boys in Green.

Goals from Nemanja Mihajlović, Mijat Gačinović and Saša Lukić earned the visitors all three points in Waterford after Everton’s Courtney Duffus gave Ireland the lead.

Courtney Duffus celebrates scoring the first goal of the game with Jack Byrne Jack Byrne celebrating with Ireland's goalscorer. Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Anderlecht goalkeeper Liam Bossin also saved a penalty from Uroš Djurdjević to maintain Ireland’s advantage after Celtic defender Eoghan O’Connell committed a foul in the box, though the hosts can have little complaints over the result.

Two goals in the space of three minutes, firstly from Mihajlović then Gačinović midway through the second-half, turned the game on its head before Lukić sealed all three points in the closing stages.

Noel King’s side finish the campaign in fourth position with just four wins from their 10 qualifiers, which included two wins over Andorra and home victories against Lithuania and Slovenia.

IRELAND: Bossin; O’Connell, Hoban (C), Lenihan, O’Connor; Cullen, Browne, J. Byrne (Mulraney 71′); Shodipo (Kavanagh 79′), Duffus (Maguire 72′), Charley.

Subs not used: Grimes, Hoare, Kinsella, Dimaio.

SERBIA: V. Milinković, Savić; Gajić, Lazić, Veljković, Ristić; A.Živković, Lukić (V. Jovanović 89′), Grujić, Gačinović; Čavrić (Mihajlović 59′), Djurdjević(C) (Ožegović 78′).

Subs not used: Radunović, Maraš, Filipović, Plavšić.

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