Rangers striker Matthew Shiels – whose strong Donegal family ties led to an Irish call-up – made his debut for the Republic of Ireland Under-18s yesterday in Spain.
In Ireland’s first game of a three-match invitational tournament, Jim Crawford’s side were beaten 3-0 by Belgium, with Shiels playing 46 minutes.
Belgium went into a two-goal lead before half-time, with goals courtesy of Ibrahim Kargbo and Alan Mayanga and before Shawn Adewoye scored Belgium’s third goal during the second half.
Over a five-day training camp, Ireland will also line out against Netherlands and Czech Republic near Murcia, in the Pinatar Arena.
Shiels represented Scotland at Under-17 level, but a call by Dessie Kelly, the Letterkenny-based soccer administrator, to the FAI prompted this week’s call.
Shiels’ paternal grandparents, Tommy Shiels and Anna (nee McDaid) both hail from Donegal.
The late Tommy Shiels was from Manorcunningham. He married Anna McDaid, originally from Lower Main Street in Letterkenny. He is a cousin of former Letterkenny Rovers striker Paddy McDaid.Tags: