Football returned this weekend and up and down the motorways of England, fans started the season with hope afresh in their hearts in the Npower leagues. We as always have large numbers of Irish players involved in the various games and taking pride of place, numbers wise was Reading v Millwall.
David Forde was in good form for the Lions and Alan Dunne took the plaudits on Talk sport for another tough tackling display including one cruncher on Shane Long. Long was very poor yesterday being overshadowed by Noel Hunt and Ian Harte continued his return to form as he helped the Royals battle back from 2 down to snatch a 2-2 draw.
Off the M6 at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry with Joe Murphy debuting in goal, continued last season’s poor form losing to big spenders Leicester 1-0. A tasty midlands derby saw Darius Vassell red carded along with a Coventry player. Dave Bell got a full game for the Sky Blues and Roy O’Donovan came on in the second half.
If you swing a right at Coventry the M5 takes down to cider country and at Ashton Gate, Bristol City lost 3-0 to a new look Ipswich. Mark Kennedy set up two of the goals and Dean Delaney was taken off after clouting Jon Stead in the second half by Paul Jewell. Colin Healy was on the bench.
Back down the M4, Paolo DiCanio’s Swindon were the Second Division’s big winners beating Crewe 3-0 in front of over 8,000. Alan McCormack and Michael Timlin both played.
DiCanio has a mouth as big as the Severn and one of his former players labelled as ‘’a bad apple’’ by the mouthy Italian, Jonathan Douglas had a brilliant game along with Neil McGinn for Uwe Rosler’s Brentford who enjoyed a 2-0 win over Yeovil. The Swindon IL Duce is sure to entertain as the season progresses and the league two grounds will provide plenty of amusement for fans as they bait self-professed Mussolini fan.
Sportsnewsireland’s find of last season Mark Byrne hit a winner for Barnet, away at Barry Roche’s Morecombe and Burton’s John McGrath enjoyed a 2-2 draw away to Martin Ling’s Torquay on the English riveara.
Back up the M5 Jon Macken and Walsall enjoyed a good win over fancied Orient for whom Steve Dawson missed out. Also in League One, our Clinton and James O’Connor helped title favourites Sheffield Wednesday to a 2-0 win over Rochdale. Having lost 14-0 at Alfreton Town the Wednesday fans won’t be long however in pointing the finger if Gary Megson doesn’t keep them winning.
Alan Sheehan helped Notts County to a fine 3-0 away win at Peter Murphy’s Carlisle.
Back in the Championship, David Connolly scored for Southampton in a great 3-1 win over Leeds who had Darren O’Dea and Andy O’Brien in their side. A Shane Scannel goal couldn’t prevent Palace losing at promoted Posh and Paddy McCarthy again skippered Palace.
Up the A14 and along the M6, you hit the Lancashire M62 and that’s where two Dubliners provided Burnley with a draw against Watford. Chris McCann enjoyed a good game but the match belonged to Keith Tracey who came on and scored a goal six minutes form time.
Sportsnewsireland.com will have live score updates on all GAA Championship matches over the summer.