‘You dream of these moments’ – Kilkenny star nets first goal for boys in green
It was a good night for Castlecomer’s Seani Maguire, scoring his first international goal and impressing the fans, the pundits and most importantly the manager.
“I’d say notably Seani Maguire played well,” enthused Mick McCarthy, the Ireland manager, after watching the boys in green come from behind to beat New Zealand 3-1 last night in the Aviva.
And the manager wasn’t just talking about the 25-year-old’s goal, his first in a green jersey after seven appearances, he was referring to his performance in general.
Maguire’s performance certainly puts him firmly in the manager’s focus as an option, at least to spring from the bench, for Ireland’s winner-takes-all crunch Euro 2020 qualifier against Denmark, next Monday.
Playing wide right, just in behind 17-year-old debutant Troy Parrott, Maguire impressed all night. His pace, his ability to find space, his link play and the timing of his runs a thorn in the side of the All-Whites defence all night.
Maguire’s first Ireland goal came on 52 minutes, a beauty from outside the box. The Preston North-End man drifting off the defender to arrive late just outside the box, and blasted into the top corner.
— RTÉ Soccer (@RTEsoccer) November 14, 2019
He had a couple of chances in the first half to open his Ireland account, but it’s testament to him and his current confidence levels that he was willing to have another go.
Speaking with RTÉ sport after the game, a beaming Maguire was delighted to get his first goal for his country and hopes goals will come more naturally now.
“It’s a massive weight off my shoulders. It’s the type of goal I don’t normally score. Normally I score my goals inside the 18-yard box. The chances I got in the first half, nine times out of ten I’d fancy myself to score.
“I was frustrated at half-time. The gaffer, TC (Terry Connor) and Robbie just said, ‘keep going, keep getting into those areas’. Thankfully, I scored.”
“The moment it left my foot I knew it was in.
“You dream of these moments, scoring for your country. I’m over the moon.”