Spillane stars for the Irish

Norwich City youngster Michael Spillane again found himself centre stage in Dublin last night as the Republic of Ireland's Under-17 outfit continued their European Championship Elite Phase qualifying campaign with a hard-fought 1-1 draw against Israel.

Norwich City youngster Michael Spillane again found himself centre stage in Dublin last night as the Republic of Ireland's Under-17 outfit continued their European Championship Elite Phase qualifying campaign with a hard-fought 1-1 draw against Israel.

The City Academy prospect, playing in central midfield, earned the Irish teenagers a first-half penalty after having his legs swept from under him by Israeli goalkeeper Daniel Machluf, only for his team-mate Christy Fagan to blast the spot-kick over the bar.

Ireland - 4-0 victors over Romania on Monday night - then saw their hopes of qualifying for the finals in May take a big blow in the 71st minute when Israeli midfielder Omer Damari opened the scoring.

It was left to top scorer Terry Dixon to rescue a point when he latched on to a Spillane knockdown from a late corner to blast the Irish teenagers level.


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The Republic of Ireland now require a win against Serbia & Montenegro in their final game tomorrow night to secure top spot and book a place in May's finals in Luxembourg.

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