Draw with Uruguay secures top spot for Ireland

Ireland 1 – Uruguay 1

2019 World University Games Men’s Soccer Pool A, Stadio Pinto, Naples, Italy 7/7/2019 Ireland vs Uruguay Ireland’s Sean McSweeney with Bruno Sarasua Leoni of Uruguay ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

Ireland have qualified for the quarter finals of the Men’s Football competition at the World University Games in Napoli as an Alan O’Sullivan goal proved crucial in a draw against Uruguay on Sunday afternoon in Stadio Pinto, Caserta.

Ireland knew going into the game anything other than defeat would see them top the group and the boys in green got the best possible start after twenty minutes as Robert Slevin chipped a ball, that was then directed into the path of Alan O’Sullivan and the IT Carlow striker held his nerve to power home his third goal of the games and his tenth World University Games goal in total.

The one gaol advantage was short lived as Martin Oppenheimer was clipped to the ground by Sean Trimble and Uruguay had a penalty, that was slotted home by Santiago Pallares and it was very much game on then.

Ireland were content to sit back and allow Uruguay to hold the possession in their own half of the field but once they got near the danger zone Ireland defended firmly and created several good chances on the break, with Cillian Duffy and Simon Falvey both going close.

Uruguay began to chase the game near the end and saw their captain Bonaudi sent for an early shower as he brought down Simon Falvey as the University College Cork student raced in on goal.

The result sees Ireland set up a quarter final clash with Russia on Tuesday in Caserta with an 8pm kick off time.

Ireland: David Coffey, Maurice Nugent, Joe Manley, Robert Slevin, Sean Trimble (Cillian Duffy 45’), Ronan Young (Tristian Noack Hoffman 73’), Anthony McAlavey, Dean Kelly, Jamie Hollywood (Sean Quinn 70’), Sean McSweeney, Alan O’Sullivan (Simon Falvey 65’)