Germany too strong for Sue Ronan’s Ireland

Ireland finish World Cup qualifiers in third as Russia secure second place with win in Croatia

Ruesha Littlejohn of Ireland holds off  Melanie Behringer  of Germany   at Voith-Arena  in Heidenheim, Germany. Photograph:  Thomas Niedermueller/Bongarts/Getty Images

Ruesha Littlejohn of Ireland holds off Melanie Behringer of Germany at Voith-Arena in Heidenheim, Germany. Photograph: Thomas Niedermueller/Bongarts/Getty Images

 

Germany 2 Rep of Ireland 0

Spoiling the German parade before over 7,000 supporters in Heidenheim proved a bridge too far for the Republic of Ireland women this evening.

A brace of goals in six first-half minutes undid them in their concluding World Cup qualifier and ended slim hopes of snatching a play-of place ahead of Russia, who confirmed second place in Group One with a 3-1 win in Croatia.

Ireland finished third.

Having matched the tabletoppers until the 28th minute, Ireland were caught on the counterattack when Anja Mittag squared for Melanie Behringer to slot past Emma Byrne from just inside the box.

German stalwart Mittag then put the tie beyond Sue Ronan’s side by rocketing a volley into the roof of Byrne’s net.

Half-chances for Ireland to reduce the arrears were squandered by Doran Gorman and Louise Quinn, while Byrne was thankful for Fatmire Alushi’s shot clipping the crossbar.

But Ireland concluded the tie confirming their status as the nation that pushed the Germans closest in the two meetings over their perfect 10-game qualification record.

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