Eileen Gleeson names Republic of Ireland squad to face Italy and Cymru

Having initially stepped up to take charge of the Republic of Ireland’s beloved Girls in Green in the interim after the departure of Vera Pauw following the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, Eileen Gleeson has since been named by the FAI as the permanent Head Coach.

As her side prepare to face Italy in Firenze before welcoming Cymru to Dublin’s Tallaght Stadium, Gleeson named her first squad of the calendar year on Thursday morning. Everton’s Courtney Brosnan is expected to remain as Gleeson’s first choice goalkeeper, but will face competition from both London City Lionesses’ Grace Moloney and Lewes’ Sophie Whitehouse.

There are of course a plethora of names that fans will be familiar with from both the Barclays Women’s Super League and the Barclays Women’s Championship, including Manchester United’s Aoife Mannion – who returned to the pitch for the first time less than a week ago after a prolonged absence following an ACL injury.

She is accompanied in defence by Reading’s Jessie Stapleton, Celtic’s Caitlin Hayes, Liverpool’s Niamh Fahey, Birmingham City’s Louise Quinn, London City Lionesses’ Megan Campbell and FC Zürich’s Diane Caldwell.

Embed from Getty Images

Louise Quinn is somewhat of a surprise inclusion, given that she dislocated her shoulder while playing for Birmingham City last month.

Arsenal’s Katie McCabe will feature as always for the Girls in Green throughout the next international window, as Eileen Gleeson’s side ramp up preparations for the UEFA Women’s EURO 2025 qualification process that begins in April.

Her midfield colleagues will include North Carolina Courage’s Denise O’Sullivan, Birmingham City’s Jamie Finn, Lily Agg and Lucy Quinn, Bristol City’s Megan Connolly, London City Lionesses’ Ruesha Littlejohn, Crystal Palace’s Izzy Atkinson, West Ham’s Jess Ziu, Everton’s Heather Payne and Blackburn Rovers’ Tyler Toland.

Leading the line for Gleeson’s Girls in Green, San Diego Wave’s Kyra Caruso, Crystal Palace’s Abbie Larkin, Liverpool’s Leanne Kiernan, Standard Liège’s Amber Barrett and Wake Forest University’s Emily Murphy.

Murphy’s involvement comes after she has seemingly decided to switch allegiances to the Republic of Ireland, qualifying through her Dublin-born father despite playing her youth football for England.