Ireland expect goakeeper Emma Byrne back for World Cup qualifier against Slovakia

Team kicks-off World Cup qualifying campaign against Slovakia in Bray on Sunday

Ireland expect to have experienced goalkeeper Emma Byrne back for their world Cup qualifier against Slovakia at the Carlisle Grounds in Bray tomorrow.  Photograph: Eric Luke

Ireland expect to have experienced goalkeeper Emma Byrne back for their world Cup qualifier against Slovakia at the Carlisle Grounds in Bray tomorrow. Photograph: Eric Luke

 

The Ireland women’s team kicks-off its World Cup qualifying campaign in Bray on Sunday (Carlisle Grounds, kick-off 1pm), where Sue Ronan’s side take on Slovakia ahead of a trip to meet Croatia on Thursday.

Given Ireland’s group also includes Germany and Russia, as well as Slovenia, and there is only one automatic qualifying spot plus play-offs for the second-placed teams, there is considerable pressure to make a good start to the campaign.

Ronan lost impressive young defender Louise Quinn to injury earlier this week but Arsenal goalkeeper Emma Byrne, who missed two club games recently following an accident, has come through the squad’s preparations without any problems and is expected to captain the team.