Republic of Ireland Ladies Winter Training Continues
The Republic's ladies team are at their training camp in La Manga, Spain. Team manager Sue Ronan has said she is pleased with their training, the squad linked up with Holland during the week. A practice match in four quarters featured 19 of the Irish squad, with Dora Gorman absent due to illness. The squad continue training in La Manga until Friday (18/01/2014).
“It was a real ‘blowing away the cobwebs’ exercise as the players in the squad who are based abroad are out of season and the home based players only returned to action last Sunday after the Christmas break. Some of the players hadn’t seen a ball since the end of their season last year so we are treating this week like a pre-season camp,” said Ronan.
“The game was an opportunity for myself and my Dutch counterpart to try plenty of things and it was a very worthwhile exercise for both of us. Everything we do here and in Cyprus in March will be geared towards being right for the World Cup qualifiers against Germany and Russia in April and May and I was pleased with what I saw today.
“We were playing a very good team, who reached the semi-finals of the Euros last season, and we restricted them to just two chances in the opening two quarters. They scored from one, which was really a mistake by us, and the other saw Emma Byrne, who came here with just one training session under her belt, produce a fantastic save.
“We kept it tight in the third quarter as well but fatigue set in during the final quarter and we started to look tired and ragged and they scored twice. But those two goals, like the first, were first class strikes into the top corner.
“There were some very good performances from the likes of Diane Caldwell and Karen Duggan while some of the inexperienced players now know that they have a lot to do. It showed us the standard we have to aspire to and we are going to keep working hard to get there,” said Ronan.