With the pressure from the shoulders on the way to Gothenburg on April 12, Louise Quinn has warned Sweden that Ireland is capable of absorbing complacency.
Europe’s highest ranked team in Fifa’s position is heading towards a flawless eight-game World Cup qualifier campaign that has already won five straight wins.
Their victory over Ireland in October was only a narrow victory; The Tallaght battle was settled by an unfortunate own goal from Quinn.
Stina Blackstenius, who whipped in the cross for that winner, recently became their latest star to join a superpower by choosing Arsenal over Manchester United, but Ireland will not travel with any fear.
Quinn has mentioned the recent victory from his basement in Birmingham City over Women’s Super League leader Arsenal as an example from which Ireland can take motivation.
Vera Pauws Girls in Green is currently taking Finland in the hunt for second place, a way into the 2023 finals, and everything they can extract from the Swedes would constitute bonus territory.
Of greater importance is to disregard Georgia and Slovakia with lower seeds, while avoiding defeats against the Finns in Dublin, during the campaign. That return, unless Finland shocks the Swedes, would strengthen the play-off prize for Ireland.
“The last three are the matches we are expected to get points from but Sweden only beat us at home with a crappy goal,” said the defender.
“We have shown that we can cope against the big nations. The experience of playing bigger matches against such as Sweden, Australia and Denmark over the past year has made us good in the world.
“Personally, we who beat Arsenal last week also show that these things, whatever, can happen in football.
“If Sweden has a day off and we are on it, then it is there for us. We are not expected to win and that takes away the pressure, but we love such matches against the Olympic silver medalists.
“We can give it to them again. You could see that in the last 10 minutes at Tallaght, when they put on extra defenders to try to stop us from scoring, they considered us a threat. We want to give it to them again. ”
Pauw will gather his squad for a friendship camp next month, probably in Spain, to focus on the trip to Scandinavia.
Quinn could be one of seven Irish internationals representing Brum, with goalkeeper Marie Hourihane and defender Harriett Scott alongside Jamie Finn, Eleanor Ryan-Doyle and Emily Whelan last summer. It was around this time that English-born Lucy Quinn completed the paperwork to join the camp.
“Eleanor said something at a meeting yesterday that no one understood except myself, Jamie and Emily,” the club captain explained. “Our coaches were like, ‘What?’ But we knew exactly what she was saying. It gives us a little bit of a home run.”
- Louise Quinn teamed up with David Meyler to launch the 2022 Spar FAI Primary School 5s Program, Ireland’s largest grassroots football program. Register for SPAR5s by March 4 at www.fai.ie/SPARPrimarySchool5s.