Saoirse Noonan and Éabha O'Mahony included in Ireland squad

Young guns feature in panel heading to Iceland along with veterans Denise O'Sullivan and Megan Connolly
Saoirse Noonan and Éabha O'Mahony included in Ireland squad

Éabha O'Mahony, Cork City, in action against Treaty United recently. Picture: Larry Cummins.

REPUBLIC of Ireland manager Vera Pauw has selected 23-players for the upcoming international friendly double-header away to Iceland and has included Cork natives Saoirse Noonan, Éabha O’Mahony, Megan Connolly, and Denise O’Sullivan.

Noonan and O’Mahony are two of eight Women’s National League players included in the squad but the Shelbourne striker, who had previously been named to provisional selections, is the only one that will be part of Pauw’s set-up for the first time although she did feature for Sue Ronan’s senior side for a couple of challenge matches against Wales in 2016.

Noonan cited regularly featuring for the Irish national side as the main reason for deciding to leave Cork City for Shels at the beginning of the year and she will now be hoping this is the first of many call-ups.

City midfielder O’Mahony has featured for the senior side previously - in a friendly against the USA in 2019 - but after impressing in home-based training alongside her former teammate, she has been named in the panel but as a defender.

Denise O’Sullivan and Megan Connolly retain their regular spots amongst the group as Ireland play their third and fourth friendly matches during Pauw’s reign to continue preparations for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup qualifiers, which start in September.

Two players earning international recalls are midfielders, Ciara Grant and Roma McLaughlin, who have amassed 15 and five senior caps respectively.

Grant has stood out for Shelbourne since resuming her SSE Airtricity Women’s National League career last year after spending time to focus on becoming a Doctor. The Donegal native filled in as team doctor with Ireland in March 2020.

McLaughlin was recently selected to the Division 1 Women’s Soccer All-America Third Team for the second successive year after helping Central Connecticut State University retain the NEC Women’s Soccer Championship.

Injuries rule out goalkeeper Marie Hourihan, midfielders Ruesha Littlejohn and Ellen Molloy, forwards Leanne Kiernan, Kyra Carusa, and Emily Whelan while Harriet Scott and Julie-Ann Russell are both unavailable.

The squad and staff will depart for Reykjavik on Monday, June 6th via a chartered flight for the games on Friday next and Tuesday, June 15.

Both matches will be shown live on the RTÉ Player and News Channel and both will kick off at 6pm Irish time.

Saoirse Noonan of Shelbourne in action against Aoibheann Clancy of Wexford Youths. Picture: Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile
Saoirse Noonan of Shelbourne in action against Aoibheann Clancy of Wexford Youths. Picture: Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

Goalkeepers: 

Grace Moloney (Reading), Courtney Brosnan (Unattached), Eve Badana (DLR Waves) 

Defenders: 

Keeva Keenan (Celtic), Claire O’Riordan (MSV Duisburg), Niamh Farrelly (Glasgow City), Louise Quinn (Fiorentina), Diane Caldwell (North Carolina Courage), Niamh Fahey (Liverpool), Claire Walsh (Peamount United), Éabha O’Mahony (Cork City), Áine O’Gorman (Peamount United) 

Midfielders: 

Jamie Finn (Shelbourne), Denise O’Sullivan (North Carolina Courage), Megan Connolly (Brighton & Hove Albion), Ciara Grant (Shelbourne), Roma McLaughlin (Connecticut Fusion), Jessica Ziu (Shelbourne), Katie McCabe (Arsenal) 

Forwards: 

Heather Payne (Florida State University), Rianna Jarrett (Unattached), Amber Barrett (FC Koln), Saoirse Noonan (Shelbourne)

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