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Dublin: 7 °C Saturday 19 October, 2019

Irish eyes: pressure grows on Keane as Delaney sees red in derby rout

Roy Keane is left ploughing a lonely furrow as his Tractor Boys stall – after fellow Leesider Damien Delaney is sent off.

ANOTHER QUIET WEEK from Irishmen in the Championship, as the cold weather led to a lack of goals rather than the abundance of high scores seen in the Premier League.

There were three 0-0 games, and a total of nine separate teams failed to score this weekend.

Damien Delaney & Wes Hoolahan

It wasn’t until Sunday that an Irish player finally did score. Then two Irish goals came in the same game. With a 4-1 defeat in the derby match with Norwich, Ipswich boss Roy Keane must be feeling a lot of pressure, as he slumped to a ninth defeat of the season.

Republic of Ireland defender Darren O’Dea was anonymous in the Ipswich back four and Damien Delaney ruined a good start by receiving a red card for bringing down on in-form Grant Holt.

Wes Hoolahan was brought on by the home side late in the second half, and had an immediate impact scoring his fifth goal of the season.

Here’s one fan’s view the former Shels player’s goal. It’s a peach.

(Check out Keane’s post-match conference and the clippings from the Ipswich press this morning.)

Joe Murphy & Keiren Westwood

The Irish backup goalkeepers faced each other for the first time this season, and it was Given’s main understudy who fared better in the first match, keeping a clean sheet as Coventry beat Scunthorpe 2-0.

It was another good away win for the Irish contingent at Coventry, with Richard Keogh defending solidly at the back, and Lee Carsley and Michael Doyle controlling midfield.

Scunthorpe’s Irishmen did not do as well, Cliff Byrne and Eddie Nolan failing to protect Murphy’s goal, and even worse was to come when the ball rebounded off the Irish keeper, resulting in an own goal. The 2-0 victory moves Coventry into a play-off spot.

The second round of the FA Cup took place this weekend, setting up some interesting third-round ties: hopefully FC United of Manchester can overcome Brighton in the replay to meet Portsmouth in the third round.

It also saw four Irishmen get their names on the scoresheet. However, despite their League Cup success, Kevin Thornton’s goal could not help Northampton overcome Sheffield Wednesday. The other three Irish scorers fared much better.

James Collins – Burton Albion

The Aston Villa and Ireland underage striker scored his fifth goal in nine games on loan at League Two side Burton Albion. They easily beat Chesterfield, and will play Middlesbrough at home in early January.

Dave Mooney – Colchester

It should have been an easy day for League One side Colchester United up against Swindon Supermarine, who play in the Southern League Premier Division, the seventh tier of English football.

However, it took a goal from Reading loanee Mooney, who scored twice in the first round, to move him to the top of the FA Cup scoring charts, and give his side an away day at Swansea in the Third Round.

Anthony Pilkington – Huddersfield

It was a much easier day for Huddersfield Town, they faced League Two side Macclesfield at home, and demolished them easily to set up a nice tie with Dover Athletic. The Irish U-21 forward scored his side’s second goal as they romped home to a 6-0 victory.

It’s Pilkington’s 10th goal of the season, as he continues to shine for the League One club.

Ronan Hunt-Murphy writes about Irish football at GreenScene

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Ronan Hunt Murphy

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