Barr's effort is scant consolation
Ireland 1 England 2
Ireland's women were left frustrated and disappointed after losing 2-1 to England in their opening game of the European Championship in Antwerp yesterday.
Katie Mullan's side recovered superbly after a slow start against a side that contained seven players who had won Olympic gold medals in Rio in 2016 as they came back from 2-0 down at half-time.
But Ulster woman Bethany Barr's 43rd minute goal wasn't enough to salvage a point that Ireland richly deserved after one of their best performances against the full-time English team in recent years.
Maddie Hinch, twice voted world's best goalkeeper, had to be at her world-class best as she twice denied Anna O'Flanagan an equaliser in the dying moments.
However, Ireland can take many positives from their performance as they prepare to take on Belarus today and Germany on Wednesday with a semi-final spot still a possibility.
Ireland captain Mullan said: "We were pretty frustrated with the result but not the performance. We controlled phases of the game and had a lot of opportunities whereas in the past against England it would have been a different story."
England broke the deadlock seconds before the end of the opening quarter when Suzy Petty fired home a rebound.
Two minutes from half-time England doubled their lead when Giselle Ansley sent a powerful drag flick into the roof of the net giving McFerran no chance.
Results: Saturday: Pool A: Spain 1 Russia 0; Belgium 1 Netherlands 1; yesterday: Pool B: Ireland 1 (B Barr) England 2 (S Petty, G Ansley); Germany 13 Belarus 0; today: Pool A: Spain v Netherlands (5pm); Belgium v Russia (7.30pm); Pool B: Germany v England (12.30pm); Ireland v Belarus (2.45pm).