Date Time League Season
12 October 2021 4:30 pm U21 2021

Match Report

Irish 21’s lose in Montenegro

The Republic of Ireland U21’s endured a poor defeat today as they lost 2-1 in Montenegro.

A slow start killed Jim Crawford’s men as they conceded twice in the opening ten minutes. They had spells of pressure throughout and it with 15 minutes to go got a way back in through Mark McGuinness, but a missed penalty in the final five proved costly.

Ireland looked like they were starting ok but were hit in just the fourth minute. Nikola Krstovic bet the offside trap and Maher came out of his goal to regain possession. Krstovic bet him to it, rounded the Bray man and slotted it in.

The visitors didn’t wake up and found themselves two down in the blink of an eye. They were dispossessed deep in their own half and the ball found its way to Ivan Vukcevic, who slammed it into the roof of the net from a tight angle, beating Maher at his near post. The game wasn’t even 10-minutes old, yet Ireland looked shell-shocked.

Crawford's charges threatened at times throughout the rest of the first half, mainly through Will Ferry on the right wing. There was nothing concrete however. They picked up the pace in the second half.

In the 51st minute the referee made one of two dubious calls against the boys in green. Ross Tierney found himself under a high ball and looked to control it in the box, but went down after contact from a Montenegrin defender. There wasn’t a lot, but Tierney was definitely nudged in the box. He was unlucky to be booked for simulation.

Ireland got their way back in 15 minutes from time after a Ferry corner somehow found its’ way through to McGuinness, who stuck it in. It was a result of very poor defending from the hosts.

With 10 minutes to go, the ref made an egregious call. Lee O’Connor sent a throw in to JJ Kayode, who got grabbed and thrown to the floor and was somehow booked for a dive. If this had happened at the senior level, it would be talked about all week.

Ireland somehow got a penalty with six minutes to go. The ball fell to Jake O’Brien, who was caught from behind and went down. Not even this ref would’ve ruled against him.

Sadly for Ireland, Coventry stepped up and his effort was saved, which proved to be their only chance at an equaliser. A frustrating one for Ireland, who now need results next month against the group leaders.

  • 93'

    Full time. Very disappointing one for Ireland.

  • 92'

    The hosts have another one disallowed for offside.

  • 90'

    Three added minutes.

  • 84'

    It's saved! Coventry didn't hit it great but the keeper almost fumbled it in, but the post bails him out.

  • 83'

    Penalty Ireland! Jake O'Brien is fouled.

  • 80'

    Kayode is dragged down in the box and is somehow booked for simulation. That's an absolutely asinine call from the ref, should've been a penalty.

  • 78'

    Kayode misses a great chance to make it 2-2.

  • 77'

    Devoy and Kayode are on.

  • 77'

    Double sub. Kilkenny and Tierney are off.

  • 74'

    Goal! After some calamity in the box from a Ferry corner, McGuinness puts it in to give Ireland one back!

  • 70'

    Twenty to go. Ireland are building pressure but nothing concrete. Need a goal in the next few minutes.

  • 63'

    Keeper is fouled from said corner. That's happened numerous times from Irish corners.

  • 62'

    O'Neill gets involved early and forces a corner.

  • 60'

    Ollie O'Neill and Colm Whelan are on.

  • 60'

    Alex Gilbert and Evan Ferguson are off.

  • 59'

    Crawford getting substitutes ready.

  • 51'

    Tierney booked for simulation. Very dicey call from the ref.

  • 49'

    Montenegro nearly make it a third.

  • 46'

    Hosts get us underway for the final 45.

  • 45'

    Ferry delivers a good ball but there's a foul and it's half time. Lot of work to do in the second half.

  • 45'

    Ferry draws a foul. Has been Ireland's spark in this half.

  • 44'

    Mark McGuinness is booked.

  • 41'

    Gilbert with a nice effort, Ireland have improved these last few minutes.

  • 37'

    Sadly, nothing comes from the ensuing corner.

  • 36'

    Will Ferry's deflected shot is just wide. Best piece of Irish play all day.

  • 31'

    Montenegro put it in a third time but the flag is up.

  • 25'

    Tempo has died down. Ireland have struggled to respond to the opening ten minutes.

  • 17'

    Hosts have a chance from the edge of the area that goes over the bar. Montenegro look like they can score every time they go forward.

  • 13'

    Ireland waste a corner and concede a free from a corner.

  • 8'

    It gets worse as the hosts dispossess Ireland high and finish from a tight angle. 2-0.

  • 7'

    Kilkenny floats one in but the home keeper deals with it with ease.

  • 4'

    Awful start for Ireland. Brian Maher is rounded on the edge of the area and it's slotted in. 1-0 to the hosts.

  • 1'

    The visitors get us underway.

  • Teams coming onto the pitch now. Supposedly 500 fans in the stadium. Kickoff is nigh.

  • The team is in. There's three changes to the starting XI as Evan Ferguson, Will Ferry and Alex Gilbert all come into the side.

  • One issue however is the injury to Tyreik Wright, who shone on Friday against Luxembourg before picking up an injury. It will be interesting to see how the boys in green cope with the absence of one of their premier talents.

  • Jim Crawford has been handed a boost after his UK and Germany based players got permission to travel to Montenegro today. A win would leave them hot on the heels of both Italy and Sweden, who they'll face in Tallaght next month.

  • Hello and welcome to for live updates of the Republic of Ireland U21 clash away to Montenegro, I'm Sean Comber and I'll be updating you on today's events.


1Brian Maher Goalkeeper
2Lee O’Connor Defender
3Joel Bagan Defender
4Mark McGuinness Defender 74'
6Conor Coventry Midfielder
7Gavin Kilkenny 20 Midfielder
11Will Ferry Forward
13Jake O’Brien Defender
15Alex Gilbert 14 Midfielder
17Ross Tierney 9 Midfielder 51'
19Evan Ferguson 22 Forward
23David Odumosu Goalkeeper
5Joshua Honohan Defender
8Conor Noss Midfielder
9Joshua ‘JJ’ Kayode 17 Forward 80'
10Liam Kerrigan Midfielder
14Ollie O’Neill 15 Forward
18Ronan Boyce Defender
20Dawson Devoy 7 Midfielder
22Colm Whelan 19 Forward


Podgorica, Podgorica Capital City, Montenegro

Athlone native currently studying journalism in Dublin City University.