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Debut goal for Murphy as Ireland scrape win

Arsenal striker Rhys Murphy scored on his debut for the Ireland Under-21s as they won a hard fought opening match of in their Euro 2013 qualifying group 2-1 against 10-man Hungary.

Robbie Brady opened the scoring early on at the Showgrounds in Sligo but the visitors were level at half-time thanks to Marko Futacs' equaliser.

Murphy represented England at youth levels and was only called into the squad over the weekend but he was named in Noel King's starting line up and rewarded his coach with a well-taken winner with 16 minutes to go.

Manchester United forward Brady, currently on loan at Hull, opened the scoring inside 15 minutes when he applied a great finish to a good move which also involved Adam Barton.

Futacs, who has recently signed for npower Championship side Portsmouth, then brought Hungary back into the game despite the hosts' continued dominance - the tall striker bagging an equaliser after 38 minutes.

Ireland were unlucky not to be awarded a penalty on two separate occasions, firstly when James McCarthy seemed to be pulled back in the box.

The second claim came just before the hour mark when Murphy seemed to be brought down but the Arsenal youngster then made the Hungarian defence pay when he slotted home from close range in the 74th minute.

The visitors were then reduced to 10-men when Szombathelyi Haladas midfielder Bence Iszlai was dismissed for a poor challenge on Aidan White.

Ireland play again on Tuesday when they travel to Turkey who currently sit at the top of the embryonic Group Seven.


From Belfast Telegraph