Cork soccer stars ready for Ireland's crucial World Cup qualifiers

Denise O’Sullivan, Saoirse Noonan and Megan Connolly are included in the squad to face Finland and Slovakia
Cork soccer stars ready for Ireland's crucial World Cup qualifiers

Ireland playmaker Denise O'Sullivan after the FIFA Women's World Cup 2023 qualifying match against Sweden. Picture: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

THREE Cork players are in the Republic of Ireland Women’s National Squad for next month’s crucial World Cup qualifiers against Finland and Slovakia.

Denise O’Sullivan, Saoirse Noonan and Megan Connolly will represent the Rebel County in September’s international window.

Former Cork City Women’s FC goalkeeper Eve Badana, who now plays for DLR Waves, has also been summoned by Vera Pauw.

The Republic of Ireland are currently in second place in Group A and they will secure a World Cup play-off spot if they beat Finland next Thursday night at Tallaght Stadium.

Just one point separates the two teams but Ireland have a better goal difference than Finland, a figure inflated by an aggregate 20-0 victory over Georgia in qualifying.

Cork players have led the way for Ireland during this campaign, and they were crucial to a 2-1 away win in Finland last October.

Both Megan Connolly and Denise O’Sullivan scored that night for Vera Pauw at the Helsinki Olympic Stadium.

The Republic of Ireland Women’s National Team have never qualified for a major tournament and they are two games away from reaching their first-ever World Cup play-offs.

They will open September’s international window with a game next Thursday at Tallaght Stadium and they will face Slovakia on September 6 in Senec.

Ireland WNT Squad 

Goalkeepers: Courtney Brosnan (Everton), Grace Moloney (Reading), Megan Walsh (Brighton & Hove Albion), Eve Badana (DLR Waves).

Defenders: Harriet Scott (Birmingham City), Claire O’Riordan (Celtic), Diane Caldwell (Reading), Louise Quinn (Birmingham City), Niamh Fahey (Liverpool), Hayley Nolan (London City Lionesses), Chloe Mustaki (Bristol City), Megan Campbell (Liverpool), Áine O’Gorman (Peamount United).

Midfielders: Katie McCabe (Arsenal), Denise O’Sullivan (North Carolina Courage), Megan Connolly (Brighton & Hove Albion), Ruesha Littlejohn (Aston Villa), Jamie Finn (Birmingham City), Ciara Grant (Hearts), Lily Agg (London City Lionesses), Ellen Molloy (Wexford Youths), Jess Ziu (West Ham United), Lucy Quinn (Birmingham City).

Forwards: Heather Payne (Florida State University), Amber Barrett (FFC Turbine Potsdam), Leanne Kiernan (Liverpool), Abbie Larkin (Shelbourne), Saoirse Noonan (Durham WFC).

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