Date Time League Season
12 November 2021 5:30 pm U21 International 2021/22

Match Report

21’s lose to Italy in Tallaght

The Republic of Ireland U21’s suffered their second loss in Group F tonight, losing 2-0 to Italy in Tallaght.

Although Jim Crawford’s outfit had good passages in play, that little bit of difference in quality between the two sides was the difference, with Lorenzo Lucca grabbing a vital goal on the half hour mark.

Italy kept pressing, and found a second late on, with Matteo Cancellieri putting the issue beyond doubt.

Ireland started well and had a promising opening ten minutes. Tyreik Wright had a shot nearly go in, but Italian goalkeeper Marco Carnesecchi was alert and tipped it over.

The visitors would soon settle. Emanuel Vignato and Samuele Ricci both had decent chances flash just wide.

The breakthrough came on the half hour mark. An Italian ball from the right was poorly dealt with by Jake O’Brien as he attempted to head clear a ball he should’ve used his feet to clear. He appeared to lose his footing and as the ball hit off him Lucca was on the spot to punish the error, finishing first time to give the Azzuri the lead.

Soon after, Vignato had another effort go just wide. Ricci continued to dominate the midfield and had another good chance to score. It remained one at the half however.

A minute into the second half, Italy nearly had a screamer. The ball sat up to Andrea Cambiaso outside the box who caught it on the volley first time. His effort just went off target, but if it had been on target there would’ve been nothing Brian Maher could’ve done.

Crawford would bring on JJ Kayode and Festy Ebosele to try bring some fresh legs to the side and a few minutes later also introduced Dawson Devoy and Ross Tierney. Late on in the game, it looked like two of the subs would combine to earn Ireland a point.

In the 88th minute, Tierney was played through by Ebosele, but Caleb Okoli intervened and nullified the chance. As good as a goal from the Atalanta man.

As the boys in green pushed for an equaliser, the Azzuri would finish it on the counter. A free from a Salvatore Esposito foul resulted in a brief spell Italy being camped deep, but the visitors eventually nicked the ball back.

One pass after regaining possession and all of a sudden late substitute Cancellieri was through on goal. He kept his head and made no mistake, eventually firing past Maher to seal it. The defeat leaves Ireland in a serious uphill battle for qualification.


1Brian Maher Goalkeeper
2Lee O’Connor Defender
3Joel Bagan Defender
4Mark McGuinness Defender
6Conor Coventry Midfielder
7Gavin Kilkenny 17 Midfielder
8Conor Noss 21 Midfielder
10William Smallbone 20 Midfielder
13Jake O’Brien Defender
18Tyreik Wright Forward
22Colm Whelan 9 Forward
23David Odumosu Goalkeeper
5Oisin McEntee Defender
9Joshua ‘JJ’ Kayode 22 Forward
11Will Ferry Forward
15William Hondermarck Midfielder
17Ross Tierney 7 Midfielder
19Evan Ferguson Forward
20Dawson Devoy 10 Midfielder
21Festy Ebosele 8 Defender


12Marco Carnesecchi Goalkeeper
2Raoul Bellanova Defender
4Samuele Ricci Midfielder
6Matteo Lovato 5 Defender
7Lorenzo Colombo 18 Forward
9Lorenzo Lucca Forward 30'
10Nicolo Rovella Midfielder
14Salvatore Esposito Midfielder 89'
15Caleb Okoli Defender
16Andrea Cambiaso Defender
20Emanuel Vignato 19 Forward
1Stefano Turati Goalkeeper
3Giacomo Quagliata Defender
5Lorenzo Pirola 6 Defender
8Filippo Ranocchia Midfielder
11Roberto Piccoli Forward
17Gabriele Ferrarini Defender
18Matteo Cancellieri 7 Forward 90'
19Samuele Mulattieri 20 Forward
21Nicolo Fagioli Midfielder
  • 94'

    Full time. Ireland suffer their second loss in Group F.

  • 90'

    Goal! It's all over as Cancellieri finishes a counter attack off. Italy will take the points.

  • 89'

    Esposito fouls and receives a booking.

  • 88'

    Tierney is played in by Ebosele but a brilliant intervention by Okoli keeps it level. As good as a goal from the Atalanta man.

  • 84'

    Colombo has a great chance but Maher pulls off a great save to keep the deficit at one late.

  • 82'

    Ross Tierney has a chance at point blank range but is denied by Carnesecchi.

  • 79'

    Colombo curls one with his left and despite an initial spill, Maher collects.

  • 78'

    Rovella gets a rebound from a Lucca shot and it's just wide.

  • 76'

    They're replaced by Devoy and Tierney, respectively.

  • 76'

    Another double sub for Ireland. Smallbone and Kilkenny are off.

  • 74'

    Vignato cuts in and lets fly on his right and his effort is just off target.

  • 72'

    Rovella hits a decent strike, but Maher is well behind it.

  • 68'

    Ebosele attempts a rebound from a cross but just can't keep it down.

  • 67'

    Kayode goes down in the box, but it looks more like he slipped.

  • 62'

    Kayode wins a corner.

  • 60'

    At the hour mark. Been a much tamer second half.

  • 56'

    Kayode and Ebosele are on.

  • 56'

    Crawford makes a double switch. Whelan and Noss are off.

  • 49'

    Smallbone whips in a cross, but puts too much on it and Carnesecchi catches it routinely.

  • 46'

    Cambiasso catches it on the volley outside the box and his effort is not far off. Would've been a sensational debut goal.

  • 46'

    Second half is underway.

  • 45'

    Half time. Ireland had a chance at the end but couldn't make anything of it.

  • 44'

    Ricci has another effort but just hits wide. He's bossing the midfield so far.

  • 42'

    Wright gets the ball but Bellanova blocks his cross.

  • 39'

    Vignato has an effort just scrape wide. Looks like he knows he should've scored.

  • 35'

    Kilkenny tries one from range but it's well wide.

  • 30'

    Goal! Lucca pounces on an O'Brien slip and puts it in to give Italy the lead.

  • 29'

    Vignato delivers in a short cross but Ireland win a free out due to a handball.

  • 28'

    Esposito smacks the wall.

  • 26'

    O'Brien fouls Lucca in a dangerous position.

  • 24'

    Smallbone has an effort outside the box but can't get it on target and hits well wide.

  • 20'

    Wright whips a dangerous ball into Whelan, but Lovato intervenes and heads behind for a corner.

  • 15'

    Ricci gets some room but fires over. Italians are starting to find their feet.

  • 12'

    Vignato attempts the spectacular but shoots wide. Good work from Bellanova down the right to get the cross in. Ireland can't afford to leave players unmarked in positions like that though.

  • 10'

    Fairly even contest so far. The home side don't seem to fear their visitors at all.

  • 3'

    Jake O'Brien plays through Wright down the left and his cross nearly catches out Carnesecchi, who tips it over.

  • 1'

    We're underway.

  • Ten minutes until kickoff. There appears to be wind and rain, much like the senior's game last night. Conditions may play a factor in this one.

  • The Italian lineup is also in. Paolo Nicolato seems to be playing a 4-3-3.

  • The Republic of Ireland squad is in. Appears to be a 3-4-3.

  • Hello and welcome to for live updates of today's 2023 U21 European Championship qualifier between the Republic of Ireland and Italy, I'm Sean Comber and I'll be updating you on today's proceedings.

Past Meetings

(5-8th Play Off)
1 - 3
European Amputee Football Championship
Garbarnia Stadium

Ireland v Italy

2 - 1
Women's Senior

Italy v Republic of Ireland

1 - 1
Women's Senior
AEK Arena

Italy v Republic of Ireland

4 - 1
UEFA Women's EURO Qualification

Italy v Republic of Ireland

1 - 2
UEFA Women's EURO Qualification
Tallaght Stadium

Republic of Ireland v Italy

(Algarve Cup)
4 - 1
Women's Senior
Estadio Dr. Francisco Vieira, Silves

Italy v Republic of Ireland

0 - 1
Women's Senior
Richmond Park

Republic of Ireland v Italy

(International Friendly)
2 - 0
Women's Senior
Stadio Francesco Baracca, Mestre

Italy v Republic of Ireland


Tallaght Stadium
Tallaght Stadium, Whitestown Way, Tallaght, Dublin 24, D24 XC9W

Formerly DCU Journalism, covering mainly Athlone teams for