Gleeson keen for players to do 'simple things' after Wales loss

Gleeson keen for players to do 'simple things' after Wales loss

Ireland's Eileen Gleeson has emphasised the importance of her players executing the basics correctly in future games after experiencing Ireland's first loss under her leadership against Wales this week.

Ireland had won every competitive game under Gleeson and were promoted from their Nations League group. Last week's 2-0 home loss against Wales was the first defeat of her Ireland reign.

Speaking after the game, the Dubliner said, "Obviously, I was super disappointed with the performance. The first half was not anything we anticipated.

"I felt we didn't really do the simple things well. Pick up your runner off a corner—that is a simple thing. Take care of the ball. We gave the ball away very cheaply and were slow with our decision-making. We were playing passes into crowded areas and giving them away.

"They are not really related to that or whether we have a back four or a back three. They are the simple things that you have to do well, and I feel that we definitely didn't do them well in the first half."

Gleeson says simple things need to be done better in Ireland's future games and claims that the "simple" aspect was lacking in the Welsh loss.

Republic of Ireland head coach Eileen Gleeson during the international women's friendly match between Republic of Ireland and Wales at Tallaght Stadium in Dublin. (Photo By David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

"The girls have been brilliant. There were no signs of complacency. When you are on the pitch, you have to find the ability to change the game, calm it down, and not make one mistake, a second mistake, or a third mistake. If you lose a player, don't lose her again. It is being accountable for that. We were able to affect it a bit better in the second half, but we gave ourselves too much.

"Look, there is no excuse; it wasn't where it should have been, and we didn't do the simple things well enough."

On the positive side, Jess Ziu and Emily Murphy's displays were a highlight of the defeat. Gleeson praised the duo.

“As much as I am giving out, there are positives. Jess Ziu had a really good game, a bright aspect for tonight, and Emily Murphy came on; she is strong and physical and understands the game.”

The Euro 2026 qualification draw will take place next Tuesday’s draw in Nyon.