The Republic of Ireland are sweating on the extent of an arm injury Denise O'Sullivan suffered towards the end of Thursday night's 1-0 World Cup qualifier defeat to Sweden.

O'Sullivan was excellent throughout a resolute Irish performance against the world No 2-ranked Swedes but the Corkwoman could be a serious doubt for Tuesday's clash in Finland.

Although O'Sullivan stayed on the pitch until the full-time whistle, she headed straight down the tunnel afterwards, and boss Vera Pauw admitted she was in some discomfort.

"It worries [me] really because it doesn't look good but we need to assess, so the doctor is now with her," she said.

"I have no idea [if she'll face the Finns]."

Finland beat Georgia 3-0 in Group A's other game. They have six points out of a possible six having edged past Slovakia last month.

It means Ireland, who expended enormous energy in frustrating a high-class Swedish outfit, will have their work cut out to come away from Helsinki with what would be a crucial victory.

Pauw was upbeat however as she stressed her side are on an upward curve.

"We grow every single game. Every game is getting better. This was better than Australia in the way we played and the way we can [execute] the game plan. We believe... we have belief.

"We need to be realistic. As long as we play realistically and as long as we set a gameplan that suits the players and brings us a step further, then I think we are on the right way."