The Republic of Ireland women’s team will open their 2015 World Cup qualifying campaign with games against the three lowest ranked teams in Group 1.
Sue Ronan’s team were drawn in Group 1 along with Germany, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia and Croatia earlier today at UEFA Headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland, and the group fixtures were agreed by the countries at a meeting immediately afterwards.
Ireland’s went into the draw as third seeds and their opening three games this autumn will be against the three teams seeded below them.
The campaign will open on 22 September with a home game against Slovakia, which will be followed by a trip to bottom seeds Croatia four days later and a month later on either 30 or 31 October, Ireland will travel to Slovenia
Two time World Cup winners and current European champions Germany will visit Ireland on 5 April, 2014, and this will be followed a month later, on 7 May, with another home game against second seeds Russia who have qualified for this summer’s European Championships in Sweden.
That will mark the halfway point in Ireland’s campaign and they start the second half in June 2014 with a home game on 14 June against Croatia followed by a trip to Russia on 19 June.
Ireland will finish the campaign with three games in four weeks as they play Slovenia at home on 20 August and then end with away trips to Slovakia on 13 September and Germany on 17 September.
“It was hard fought but we managed to get a fixtures programme that we are fairly happy with,” said Ireland manager Sue Ronan.
“The opening three games against the teams ranked below us offers us a chance to try and put points on the board before facing Germany and Russia in 2014.”
The venues for Ireland’s home games will be announced later.
Ireland’s Group 1 fixtures:
September 22, 2013: Republic of Ireland v Slovakia
September 26, 2013: Croatia v Republic of Ireland
October 30/31 2013: Slovenia v Republic of Ireland
April 5, 2014: Republic of Ireland v Germany
May 7, 2014: Republic of Ireland v Russia
June 7, 2014: Republic of Ireland v Croatia
June 19, 2014: Russia v Republic of Ireland
August 20, 2014: Republic of Ireland v Slovenia
September 13, 2014: Slovakia v Republic of Ireland
September 17, 2014: Germany v Republic of Ireland