Republic of Ireland women’s football team triumphs at history-making Aviva Stadium debut

The Republic of Ireland kickstarted its UEFA Nation's League campaign with a 3-0 victory over neighbours Northern Ireland.

Republic of Ireland players celebrating Kyra Carusa's goal at the Aviva Stadium. In the photo you can see four players, including Carusa, McCabe, Larkin and O'Sullivan. McCabe is being lifted by Carusa, and has her arm raised, while Larkin and Denise are running towards the pair smiling.
Image: X: @IrelandFootball

On Saturday, September 23, history was made as the Republic of Ireland took on Northern Ireland for the first-ever women’s football match at the Aviva Stadium. The Girls in Green earned a 3-0 victory in front of a record crowd of 35,944, as both sides kickstarted their UEFA Nations League campaigns.

Just after the half-hour mark, fans in the stadium erupted as Lucy Quinn also carved her name in history, becoming the first female footballer to score in the Aviva. She got on the end of a Katie McCabe corner, hitting the back of the net with a sweetly struck volley into the bottom right corner.

The Republic of Ireland created more chances in the first half, but goalline clearances from the travelling team kept the score at 1-0 at the break. 


It wasn’t until the 70th minute that the home side’s lead was doubled, as Kyra Carusa capitalised on a mistake from the Northern Irish defence. Her shot from distance nestled into an open net, marking her first goal for her country.

The third and final blow for Northern Ireland came in the 85th minute from substitute Lily Agg, who scored with a powerful header after getting on the end of another well-delivered McCabe corner. It topped off a dominant display from the Girls in Green in their first match since the Women’s World Cup.

Speaking after the historic occasion in the Aviva Stadium, Repulic of Ireland interim manager Eileen Gleeson, who has taken the reigns since Vera Pauw’s departure, said: “What a day. Super proud of the girls. Solid performance, three goals, clean sheet – really good day all round.”

Tyler Toland, winner of the Sky Player of the Match award, also commented, saying: “It’s a very proud day to be Irish, I must say. It’s absolutely incredible – so many people coming out to support us, and hopefully it continues this way. We’ll keep putting on performances, keep winning and the people of Ireland keep coming to watch us.”

Toland, who wasn’t involved in the squad for the previous four years under Pauw’s leadership, added, “I’m delighted to be back and nothing makes me prouder than playing for my country.”


The result means that the Republic of Ireland sit on top of Group B1 in the UEFA Nations League as they head into their next fixture against Hungary on Tuesday, September 26.

© 2023 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

Support GCN

GCN has been a vital, free-of-charge information service for Ireland’s LGBTQ+ community since 1988.

During this global COVID pandemic, we like many other organisations have been impacted greatly in the way we can do business and produce. This means a temporary pause to our print publication and live events and so now more than ever we need your help to continue providing this community resource digitally.

GCN is a registered charity with a not-for-profit business model and we need your support. If you value having an independent LGBTQ+ media in Ireland, you can help from as little as €1.99 per month. Support Ireland’s free, independent LGBTQ+ media.

0 comments. Please sign in to comment.