Ireland 0 Spain 2
Ireland's u16s failed in their bid to qualify for the European Championship finals when they went down to Spain in the mini-tournament in Riga yesterday.
A 0-0 draw against the hosts, Latvia, on Friday left Brian Kerr's team needing to beat the Spanish - 1-0 conquerors of the Latvians in their first game - to book a place in the finals in England.
But a Spanish goal early in the second half left Ireland chasing the game.
Stephen Bradley had a shot blocked and Robbie Shields of Leeds - singled out by Kerr as Ireland's best player - drew a great save from the Spanish 'keeper before Ireland conceded a second, crucial goal.
"We did not play too badly, but we didn't really do enough in midfield to win the game," Brian Kerr said. "The early goal in the second half put us under enormous pressure. But our lads had one or two chances."
Teams Pld W D L GF GA Pts
Spain 2 2 0 0 3 0 6
Latvia 2 0 1 1 0 1 1
Republic of Ireland 2 0 1 1 0 2 1
Morgan Cranley (Belvedere); Kieran Sharkey (Belvedere), Pierre Ennis (Aston Villa), Chris McGrath (Liverpool), Eddie Keyes (Belvedere), Glen Whelan (Manchester City), Paul Keegan (Leeds Utd), Stephen Rice (Coventry), Stephen Maguire (Belvedere), Stephen Bradley (Arsenal), Robbie Shields (Leeds Utd). Subs: John Fitzgerald (Blackburn) for McGrath 53 mins; Joe Salmon (Lourdes Celtic) for Bradley 53; Ian McGrane (Wolves) for Rice 68.