Vera Pauw’s side are priced at 100/1 to go all the way, but face a tough challenge making it out of a group that also contains Canada and Nigeria.
The Women’s World Cup kicks off on Thursday, with the Republic of Ireland clashing with host nation Australia, who are one of the favourites to win the tournament. Vera Pauw’s side are priced at 100/1 to go all the way, and face a tough challenge making it out of a group that also contains Canada and Nigeria.
Limerick native Claire O’Riordan is a member of the Irish squad who sealed their place at a first ever World Cup with a win over Scotland last year.
- Republic of Ireland
Matchday 1 – Australia v Republic of Ireland – Thursday July 20 11:00am
Coming into the opener, Australia are strong favourites, priced at 1/4, and the hosts are one of the favourites to win the whole tournament, although they never have in it’s 32 year existence. Ireland are priced at 10/1 for this one, but will no doubt embrace the underdog status as they bid to cause an upset down under.
Matchday 2 – Canada v Republic of Ireland – Wednesday July 26 13:00pm
A very tough clash for Pauw’s side, but assuming they take nothing from the Australia game, they will need a result here. Canada come in at 33/1 to win the tournament outright, and will be favourites against Ireland, but the Girls in Green definitely have a chance. Canada’s best finish at a Women’s World Cup came in China in 2007, when they finished fourth.
Matchday 3 – Republic of Ireland v Nigeria – Monday July 31 11:00am
The final matchup of the group stage will be one that Ireland can look forward to with confidence. The Nigerians are long outsiders for the cup at 250/1, and Ireland, as well as the other Group B sides, will be expected to beat them if they are to have any hope of venturing beyond the group stage.
Assuming Australia conquer all before them, and Nigeria prop up the table as expected, the clash between Ireland and Canada in Matchday 2 effectively becomes a shootout for second-place, and knockout qualification. The Canadians will no doubt be favourites for the bout, but all Ireland need is a chance, and after upsetting the odds to reach the finals, they will back themselves.
The Limerick Connection
Celtic defender Claire O’Riordan hails from Limerick, and has been selected in the squad for the tournament. The 28-year-old has been an Ireland international since 2016, and recently scored her first international goal in the win over Zambia.
Her roots are deeply embedded in the GAA, and she has represented her county in both Football and Camogie.
The star of the team is no doubt captain Katie McCabe. The Tallaght woman plays domestically for Arsenal, and even captained the Gunners this season. She will be leading the Girls in Green both on and off the pitch this summer.
A tough tackling player on the pitch, McCabe recently became the only WSL player named in the Champions League team of the season, a testament to her talent.
With the tournament just days away, the excitement is palpable, as the Girls in Green look to ruffle a few feathers down under, and perhaps cause an upset or two.
Yes, it will a tough challenge, but this is an extremely talented group, who are more than capable of holding their own on the world stage.