USA U20 1-0 Republic of Ireland U21; Wilkinson Goes 90

  • November 16, 2014 | By Chris Mann
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Conor Wilkinson completed the full 90 minutes on Saturday, as Republic of Ireland's U21 side were beaten 1-0 by their USA under-20 counterparts in Spain.

The friendly fixture, which was being played at the Estadio San Pedro, in Marbella, was the latest in the States' preparations for the CONCACAF under-20 tournament, which begins in January, and they proved to be superior to their Irish opposition.

The Republic started brightly and could have gone ahead in the 12th minute, but Wilkinson headed straight at Santiago Castano after he was picked out by Kenny McEvoy's cross.

Wilkinson was made to rue his miss less than 60 seconds later, as Dembakwi Youmba pounced on a sloppy backpass before rolling the ball beyond a helpless Danny Rogers to put the United States in front.

Liam Kelly volleyed straight at Castano on the half-hour, after he was teed-up by Wilkinson, while the same man was denied in the final minute of the opening period after McEvoy had drilled in a low cross.

Wilkinson came close to equalising in the 64th minute, but volleyed over the bar after doing well to control and turn from a Jack Byrne cross, before Tommy Hoban headed wide from another Byrne cross as the game entered the final 10 minutes.

A neat one-two involving Byrne and Pierce Sweeney ended with the former shooting over, before the Republic saw two chances pass by inside four minute of stoppage time - as the USA held on to claim victory.

After Wilkinson had volleyed over the bar, the final chance fell the way of Rogers - the Irish goalkeeper, up for a corner - but his acrobatic attempt from Mason Watkins-Clark's corner flashed wide of the target.

USA U20: Castano, Turner, Redding, Miazga, Requejo, Canouse (Gooch 46), Acosta, Hyndman, Thompson (Flores 74), Youmba (Gall 56), Moreno (Novakovich 84)
Goals: Youmba 13

Republic of Ireland U21: Rogers, Griffin, Watkins-Clark, Hoban, Long (Lenihan 46), J Byrne (Connolly 90), Rea, Kelly (Hamilton 46), Connors (Hayhurst 46), Wilkinson, McEvoy (S Byrne 46)

Venue: Estadio San Pedro (Marbella, Spain)

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