EPFA Nations Cup 2014

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Ireland was given the proud honor of hosting the inaugural EPFA Nations Cup for European National teams. The event took place in the magnificant sports facility of UL Arena in Limerick and was a collaboration with the AIPF and the FAI in hosting a tremendously successful event. Six countries took part in the tournament Ireland, England, France, Denmark, Belgium and Switzerland. There was a fantastic opening ceremony with music dance and theatre. Also some great fun was had prior to competition in a Bubble Football tournament.

The Ireland team for the 2014 Nations Cup was Patrick Flanagan, Emmet Daly, Aoife McNicholl, Emer O'Sullivan, Keith Hayes, Thomas Winters, Thomas Donogher and Neil Sheehan.  Following the openng ceremony which was attended by over 1,000 people the opening match was between Ireland and Switzerland with Ireland getting off to a positive start in front of the home crowd with a 2-0 win. Ireland followed this up the next day with a draw against Denmark having taken the lead and looking like they would hole on for a second victory. That disappointment of the draw against the Danes was compounded by a heavy defeat to France in their third game 0-14 and another defeat was to folow then to Belgium 0-2. A more spirited display against England saw Ireland get on the scoresheet but again it was another defeat ending 1-4 but Ireland had qualified for the semi finals. The semi final was another harsh lesson though as the French who would become the European Champions ran riot again against an initial second string selection in the first half and would end the match with a 0-15 result. One of the best entertaining and competitive nail biting matches of the tournament was the 3rd and 4th place playoff between Ireland and Belgium. Belgium who were all in the superior equipment that was just becoming part of the sport tried in vain to break down the Irish as they had done in the round robin matches and the game went all the way to extra time and penalities which Ireland had little chance of coming out on top of with the difference in the chair equipment and duly lost 1-3 on penalties.