Ukraine 1-0 Republic of Ireland

Ireland's dreams of reaching the UEFA Women's Championships in 2022 were dealt a severe blow as Vera Pauw's side were beaten 1-0 by Ukraine in Kyiv.

The result means that Ireland are more than likely hoping that other sides can do them a favour with Ukraine now in pole position to snatch the second position in Group I.

Ireland remain in second place in the group but only have one remaining match, at home to table-toppers, Germany, while Ukraine have games against Greece and Montenegro to potentially squeeze Ireland out of the play-off position.

Despite dominating the play throughout the opening 45 minutes, Ireland found themselves one down from a bizarre own goal in the 25th minute as Aine O'Gorman overhit a back-pass and it skipped past Courtney Brosnan, who was unable to adjust her feet to clear. 

To make matters worse, Katie McCabe had a chance to restore parity with a penalty in the 33rd minute, however, the Ireland captain smashed her effort off the crossbar.

The Girls in Green huffed and puffed their way through a disappointing second half where they dominated the ball but were unable to really test the home side's second-string goalkeeper.

With three corners inside the opening 10 minutes, it was all about Ireland early on and Harriet Scott signalled their intent to take an early lead by shooting over from distance.
 
The visitors kept on playing and Katie McCabe hit the top of the crossbar with a free-kick. The constant waves of Irish pressure kept Ukraine inside their own half for the majority of the time.
 
Surprisingly, it was Ukraine who took the lead when O'Gorman found herself under pressure and attempted to play the ball back to goalkeeper Brosnan but it bypassed her into the net.
 
Ireland responded by earning a penalty on 32 minutes after Denise O’Sullivan was brought down. Captain McCabe stepped up but her effort crashed back off the crossbar.


Undeterred by their lack of luck, Vera Pauw’s team kept pressing in search of the goal that their positive play deserved. It almost came just before the interval when Rianna Jarrett met a pass from Heather Payne but the ball was cleared before it could cross the line.
 
It was all Ireland in the second period as O’Sullivan, Payne, Jarrett, McCabe and Louise Quinn all went close with chances but they just could not supply that finish that their play merited and Ukraine hung on to collect the three points.

Ukraine: Sanina; Filenko, Kravets, Shmatko, Pantsulaya (O Voronina 46, Petryk 70); Andrushchak, Khimich; Boychenko (Malakhova 90), Apanaschenko, Kozlova (Voronina 90); Kalinina (Kunina 46).
 
Republic of Ireland: Brosnan; O’Gorman, Caldwell, Quinn, Scott (Barrett 86); Connolly, O’Sullivan; Payne, Littlejohn, McCabe; Jarrett (Molloy 86).
 
Referee: Ivana Martincic (Croatia).