Sligo’s John Mahon and Donegal’s Shane Blaney were both part of the Republic of Ireland schoolboys team that opened up their Centenary Shield campaign with a dramatic 2-1 defeat of Wales at Home Farm in Dublin on Thursday.
Finn Harps’ Blaney from St Eunan’s College in Letterkenny captained the team, while Sligo Rovers’ Mahon, who is a student at Coola Post Primary School, played the first half.
Substitute Sean McDonald’s penalty gave the Irish a 2-1 victory, after they had taken the lead just a minute before the break through Neil Farrugia.
Conor Harwood had the Welsh back on level terms on 56 minutes, but, in the 92nd minute, McDonald, who had come on for the second half, converted that penalty to give the boys in green a great start to the competition.
Donegal goalkeeper Jamie Bell (St. Columba’s College, Stranorlar) and Ramelton’s Conor Gormley, who is a pupil at Loreto Community School, Milford, were on the bench for the game.
Pictures show match officials and team captains, and the Ireland Squad.
In other news, Harps midfielder and former Gweedore Celtic player Marc Walsh has been named in the Ireland U16 squad by head coach Paul Osam for two friendly internationals against Hungary in Galway and Ballinasloe next week.
Ballinasloe Town’s Curragh Grounds will host a meeting between the sides on Tuesday evening (7pm), then Mervue United will host a second encounter on Thursday afternoon (12 noon).