Norway 2-1 Republic of Ireland

Republic of Ireland's hopes of qualifying for next summer's European Under-21 Championship suffered a blow with a last-gasp 2-1 defeat to Norway.

While the senior side faced their World Cup D-day against Denmark in Dublin, the under-21s headed to snowy Drammen for a crucial match in determining their own championship ambitions.

Ireland had won three of their opening four games in Group 5, with their only dropped points a goalless draw against Norway at home.

The hosts took the lead in the 19th minute through Real Madrid youngster Martin Odegaard but Ireland hit back 13 minutes later thanks to a brilliant solo goal from Jake Mulraney.

That was the visitors' first shot on target and the pressure on the Ireland goal grew through the second half.

They looked poised to hold on for a precious point but, a minute into injury time, Iver Fossum netted the winner.

"It's a tough one to take," said boss Noel King. "We've worked so hard throughout the entire match and we definitely deserved a point. 

"To lose it in the final minute of the game, it's always going to hurt but I'm incredibly proud of this great group of players. They've shown a lot of hunger, desire and passion for the cause tonight in difficult conditions and they should be proud of their efforts.

"That is a good Norway team, full of talent, and over two games, only the final minute of the game separates us. The players are down in the dressing room but they want to get into the next game against Azerbaijan next year and get another positive result on the board.

"We've had a great start to the campaign so I'm sure we'll bounce back from this defeat. It's a long campaign and I believe in this group of players."

Republic of Ireland: O'Hara (GK), Kane, Donnellan, Sweeney, Whelan, Rice, Cullen (C), Charsley, Curtis, Manning (Ronan 85), Mulraney.

Norway: Bratveit (GK), Ryerson, Hanche-Olsen, Ajer, Jenssen, Fossum (C), Thorsby, Risa (Ingebrigtsen 85), Odegaard, Reitan (Johnsen 70), Bjordal (Espejord 73)

Referee: Ville Nevalainen (FIN)