Get To Know The Green Army Goalkeepers

Ayeisha McFerran

Debut: January 11, 2014 vs Spain

Caps: 73

International goals: 0

Current club: University of Louisville

Previous club: Larne, Randalstown, Pegasus

School: Larne Grammar School

Position: Goalkeeper

Ayeisha McFerran became the youngest goalkeeper to play for Ireland when she lined out against Spain in January 2014 a day after her 18th birthday. Since then, she has developed a reputation for being an immense shot-stopper, particularly in shoot-outs. Indeed, she made her name in that realm at the 2015 World League when she was brought in specifically for a shoot-out against Canada, winning it and a gold medal in the process. She has taken on the number one role for the most part since Emma Gray’s retirement in 2016. She started her hockey career with her hometown club of Larne, progressing to Randalstown and then Pegasus with whom she won the 2015 goalkeeper of the tournament at the IHL finals. Since then, she has been based at University of Louisville where she has been named an All-America first team selection on 3 occasions.

Grace O’Flanagan

Debut: 2012

Caps: 34

International goals: 0

Current club: Railway Union

Previous club: N/A

School: Loreto Foxrock

Position: Goalkeeper

Grace O’Flanagan played a vital role in Ireland’s qualification for the World Cup when she famously saved a penalty stroke with her first touch against India at the World League Semi-Finals in Cape Town, coming off the bench for the sin-binned Ayeisha McFerran. Ireland trailed 1-0 at the time but fought back to win 2-1. O’Flanagan is a qualified doctor, something which meant she had to step away after the panel a couple of times for study reasons in the early part of her international career. She was part of the 2013 European Championships panel before stepping back for three years, returning to the fold in 2016. She has usually been the reserve goalkeeper but took on the number one role at the 2017 Europeans in Amsterdam.

Click here for the official World Cup site.