Conor Hourihane was an unused substitute for Aston Villa who went down to a three nil Premier League defeat by Manchester City in the Etihad Stadium early on Saturday afternoon. On the South Coast, Brighton & Hove Albion included Aaron Connolly in their starting eleven for the visit of Everton and he was instrumental in their three two victory, being fouled for the free kick and later the penalty kick, both of which were scored. Captain Seamus Coleman was available following suspension but was unused on the substitute bench. Our Irish quartet of John Egan, Enda Stevens, David McGoldrick and Callum Robinson all started for Sheffield United who earned a one all draw with West Ham United at the London Stadium. The late kick-off featured Burnley in action against Turf Moor visitors Chelsea with Jeff Hendrick starting while Robbie Brady and Kevin Long were named on the ‘Clarets’ substitute bench. Chelsea cruised into a four goal lead with Burnley scoring twice in the final minutes following the 84th minute introduction of Brady for Hendrick with Brady creating both goals.
Keiren Westwood having recovered from injury started and was in fine form for third place Sheffield Wednesday who played out a scoreless draw with second place Leeds United in the early Championship kick-off at Hillsborough this Saturday afternoon. Midfielder Daniel Crowley, whose eligibility for international selection continues to be a mystery, started for Birmingham City who defeated visitors Luton Town, for whom James Collins was a 60th minute substitute, by two goals to one at St Andrew’s. There was quite a range of Irish voices at the New Den where Millwall defeated Stoke City by two goals to nil. The hosts included loanee Jayson Molumby and Shaun Williams in their starting eleven with Aiden O’Brien and Alex Pearce unused on the substitute bench while the visitors included loanee Scott Hogan in their starting eleven but he was replaced at half-time by James McClean. Ireland U21 defender Nathan Collins and senior international Stephen Ward remained on the substitute bench. The Preston North End trio of Alan Browne, Sean Maguire and Joe Rafferty started against local rivals Blackburn Rovers and Derrick Williams at Deepdale. The ‘Lilywhites recovered a two goal deficit to win by there goals to two and move up to second place on the League Table. Leaders West Bromwich Albion were held to a two all draw by visitors Charlton Athletic at the Hawthorns where West Ham United loanee Josh Cullen scored the added time penalty equaliser.
Goalkeeper Kieran O’Hara, on loan from Manchester United, was in action for Burton Albion who played out a scoreless draw with visitors Blackpool in League One.
Glenn Whelan, Jake Mulraney and Aiden White were missing, believed injured, from the Heart of Midlothian squad which made the short journey to Livingston in the Scottish Premiership. The contest ended scoreless with goalkeeper Colin Doyle unused and Aiden Keena a 67th minute substitute for the ‘Jam Tarts’.