A sending off for Republic of Ireland youngster Canice Carroll in the opening game of the European Under-19 Championship qualifiers failed to stop the Irishmen’s march to the finals.
The Oxford United right back received his marching orders after picking up two yellow cards to reduce Ireland, who hosted the qualification group, to 10 men in a 0-0 draw with Azerbaijan last Wednesday.
The 18-year-old collected the first card on 74 minutes and headed for an early bath 10 minutes later when the referee booked him again.
Cyprus were swept aside 5-0 in Waterford on Saturday while Carroll, who has made five appearances for the U’s so far this season, sat out his suspension.
A first half hat-trick from Jayson Molumby and a Jonathan Afolabi brace made sure Ireland were in with a shout of qualifying from Group 7 heading into the final group game on Tuesday.
Carroll returned to the starting line-up and played the full 90 minutes at centre half as Ireland topped the group with a 2-1 win over Serbia.
The top two teams from the 13 qualifying groups progress to the finals, hosted by Finland next spring. The draw will be held on December 6.
Carroll has played for Ireland since Under-17 level and was capped at Under-18 and Under-19 level in the 2016-17 season.