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'What dreams are made of' - Ireland's latest find on cloud nine after goal-scoring debut

Brighton-born Lily Agg bagged the winner in Sunday’s international friendly against the Philippines.

Lily Agg with her first Ireland cap.
Lily Agg with her first Ireland cap.
Image: FAI.

A WIN, A first cap and a debut goal for the Republic of Ireland.

It doesn’t get much better than that, Lily Agg smiles.

The London City Lionesses midfielder is one of Vera Pauw’s latest finds, and she well and truly announced herself on the international stage in Sunday’s 1-0 friendly victory over the Philippines.

“I’m absolutely delighted,” Agg tells FAI TV. “What dreams are made of. I didn’t really dream the night before, I didn’t get much sleep! But I was absolutely buzzing, a little bit nervous, delighted to make my debut.”

“I thought it was a really good game. Vera’s mentioned a lot about finding rhythm and getting a flow of things. The girls have made me feel really welcome. I just really enjoyed being out there, getting touches on the ball.”

The Brighton native, who qualifies for the Girls In Green through her Cork-born grandmother, looked lively through her 62-minute appearance in Antalya, Turkey, as preparations ramp up for next Monday’s World Cup qualifier away to Georgia.

Pauw hailed the 28-year-old as “fantastic on her debut,” with the Dutch coach adding:

“Scoring the winner, she’s done really well. In my opinion, she’s really a six and her best qualities is that from behind, she can push forward and put the opponent under pressure, and she sees the moments to get into the box.”

Agg’s first official call-up came ahead of April’s monumental 1-1 draw away to Sweden, having previously trained with the squad 12 months previously.

While she didn’t make the matchday 23 in Gothenburg, her involvement was welcomed with open arms after a difficult path to that point.

“I was really relieved,” she concedes. “I had a bit of a bad injury before that with my knee, which was a bit of a long-winded road to come back from that. After working quite hard to get back fit, I was absolutely buzzing to receive a call-up and end up here with the girls.”

Agg, who is also a qualified lecturer, is enjoying every moment of this current camp, a warm weather one, as the team prepare for hot conditions in Georgia next week.

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“Factor 50 is my best friend at the minute! It’s very hot out there but we’ve got our electrolytes and staff looking after us really well so it’s been really good.

“Training’s been going really well, girls are looking really sharp, everyone’s excited. We’re working as hard as we can and hopefully we can get three points.”

A win over the Georgian minnows — who Ireland hammered 11-0 in a record win in November — would see Pauw’s side move into second place in Group A ahead of September’s massive double-header against play-off spot rivals Finland and Slovakia.

There’s no injury news to report, and Denise O’Sullivan is due to link up with the squad today after three flights from her North Carolina base.

Ireland fly to Tbilisi on Saturday, ahead of Monday’s game in Gori [kick-off 4pm Irish time, live on RTÉ2 & RTÉ Player Worldwide].

BTL 5

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Emma Duffy

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