Sue Ronan wants maximum points against Montenegro in Euro 2017 qualifier

The two teams meet on Thursday aftrnoon in Petrovac

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Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Gary Carr

The Republic of Ireland Women’s National Team kick-off a crucial six days of UEFA Women’s Euro 2017 Qualifier action on Thursday as they travel to Petrovac to face Montenegro at 1pm.

The meeting with Montenegro is followed on Tuesday by a trip to Madrid to face group leaders Spain, who defeated the Girls in Green 0-3 earlier in the campaign.

Preparations for the game have been ideal with the squad travelling to Vienna for a three day training camp before flying to Montengro on Wednesday morning. 

Head Coach Sue Ronan has been impressed with how the build-up to the game has gone so far, The camp has been very very good. We arrived on Sunday night, didn’t have a full compliment of players (until Monday) because of club duty, but it’s gone very well. The players are looking sharp and eager to go.“ 

Following a 0-2 defeat in their last qualifier to Finland, Ireland travellled to the Cyprus Cup last month where hugely encouraging performances culminated in a reversal of that scoreline against group rivals Finland.

On the back of the renewed confidence in the squad, maximum points is the aim this week according to Ronan, “We spoke at the beginning of this week about the aim of this week, and the aim is to get six points. We go into each match hoping to win.  Montenegro are first up on Thursday and that’s been taking our focus up until now and will be until that game is over.

We want to build on the performances in the Cyprus Cup, we really played very well. There were some excellent passages of play, both in attack and in defence. All the results didn’t go our way, but that’s football.  I think if we can sharpen up on one or two elements of our game I’m hopeful that we will do really well over the coming week.” 

Despite Montenegro’s postion in the group they have proven themselves to be an impressive outfit, one that this Ireland team will not be taking for granted going into the game. “There are no weak teams in international football anymore at women’s level. Every team deserves respect and every team on it’s given day can trouble another team,” Ronan stated.

”I look at my squad and the strength in it, the experience in it and indeed the desire in it. They are fully focused on going out in the game on Thursday and getting the three points. It’s not going to be easy but if we play as well as we can we should certainly win the game.”