Heather Payne Returns to Irish Women’s Squad

Coach Colin Bell names 18-player squad for the upcoming FIFA 2019 World Cup qualifier against Northern Ireland.

Heather Payne and Marie Hourihand have been included in the Irish women’s squad for their final World Cup qualifier with Northern Ireland on August 31st.

Heather Payne, who recently secured a move to Women’s Super League side Bristol City, has returned to the squad following injury which ruled her out for the qualifiers against Norway.

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Colin Bell’s side started their campaign with a 2-0 win over Northern Ireland in September 2017 and will be looking to finish their campaign on a high.

Player of the Year Harriet Scott, who has recently moved to Birmingham City, has fully recovered from injury which saw her miss out on the Norway qualifiers.

Shelbourne Ladies striker Jessica Ziu receives her first call-up to the squad following an impressive debut season for the Continental Tyres Women’s National League side.

The 16-year-old has impressed for the Women’s Under-17 and Under-16 sides, and will gain valuable experience with the senior team.

“We’re looking to end the campaign on a high and it is vitally important we get a win in front of our supporters” explained Ireland Women’s head coach Colin Bell.

“We’ve had a fantastic campaign where we pushed two world-class teams in Norway and the Netherlands, and I’m delighted with how the team has developed during the course of qualifying.

“Whilst we can no longer qualify for the World Cup, every game at international level is important as we look to continue to progress ahead of the European Championships qualifying next year.

“Congratulations to Jessica Ziu on her first call-up to the senior team” explained Bell.

“She is someone who has really impressed me, having worked with her for the past 12 months. She has really progressed this season in the Women’s National League and in home-based training, and I believe she can really benefit from the week.”

Republic of Ireland WNT squad v Northern Ireland

Goalkeepers: Marie Hourihan (Brighton and Hove Albion), Amanda Budden (Cork City).

Defenders: Harriet Scott (Birmingham City), Diane Caldwell (SC Sand), Louise Quinn (Arsenal), Heather Payne (Bristol City), Claire O’Riordan (MSV Duisberg)

Midfielders: Tyler Toland (Maiden City), Karen Duggan (Peamount United), Denise O’Sullivan (NC Courage), Niamh Fahey (Liverpool), Isibeal Atkinson (Shelbourne Ladies).

Forwards: Rianna Jarrett (Wexford Youths), Katie McCabe (Arsenal), Leanne Kiernan (West Ham), Amber Barrett (Peamount United), Aine O’Gorman (Peamount United), Jessica Ziu (Shelbourne Ladies).