The Irish CP Football team had to settle for second best in the opening game of the CP Football Pre-Paralympic tournament in Salou, Spain this afternoon as they went head-to-head with a strong Brazilian team.
In what was a tough and competitive game, the Irish squad had some decent chances before the break, but went in at half-time 2-0 down following two early and well-worked goals from their opponents. Despite good play from Joe Markey and Conor Tuite, coupled with some well-timed runs from Tom Badun and Gary Messett,, they just could not break the Brazilian defence.
A determined second half display from Ireland seemed to be keeping the dangerous Brazilian attack at bay, and they had a number of chances with Ryan Nolan coming closest midway through. However, somewhat against the run of play, Brazil drove forward once more to drill home their third of the day to leave it 3-0 at the final whistle.
Speaking after the game, manager Barry Ferguson emphasized that it had been a tough but competitive encounter.
“We knew it was going to be a tough opening game,” he stated. “Brazil are a top side, but I think the lads put it up to them throughout the game and performed well as a squad.
“We’ve taken a lot of positives from the performance and we’re looking ahead now to our second game against Great Britain tomorrow evening.”
Head coach, JJ Glynn echoed his sentiments stating: “We’re disappointed with the result, but happy with the performance of the team.
“They worked well together and we were particularly happy with some of the lads who put in a really good effort and looked very impressive. We are already preparing and looking forward to meeting GB tomorrow.”
Ireland will face Great Britain on Monday, May 2nd, before taking on the USA on Tuesday, May 3rd in the final game of the group stages.
IRELAND (starting seven): Brian McGillivary, Conor Tuite, Joseph Markey, Luke Evans, Gary Messet, Darragh Snell, Tom Badun. Subs used: Ryan Nolan for Badun, Peter Cotter for Tuite.