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Airtricity League action this weekend…21/05/2022

Following the three nil victory for leaders Shamrock Rovers at UCD on Thursday evening, there were four Airtricity League Premier Division contests played on Friday evening with second place Derry City going down to a two one defeat by third place visitors Dundalk while fourth place St Patrick’s Athletic also suffered  a two one home defeat by Shelbourne in Richmond Park. Bohemian defeated Sligo Rovers by two goals to one in Dalymount Park while Drogheda United despite being reduced  to ten men,  came from behind to defeat visitors Finn Harps by three goals to one  in Head in the Game Park.  

                    P  W  D  L   F  A   G/D  Pts
Shamrock Rovers        17 12  3  2  31 11   20   39
Derry City             17  9  5  3  30 14   16   32
Dundalk                16  7  7  2  25 14   11   28

St Patrick’s Athletic  17  7  4  6  21 15    6   25
Bohemian               16  5  7  4  23 20    3   22

Sligo Rovers           17  5  6  6  22 21    1   21
Shelbourne             16  6  3  7  15 21   -6   21
Drogheda United        16  4  4  8  19 30
  -11   16
Finn Harps             16  2  4 10  13 28
  -15   10
UCD                    16  1  5 10  10 35  -25    8

 

There were three Airtricity League First Division contests played on Friday evening with Cork City held to a one all draw by Wexford in Turners Cross while Galway United leap frogged them at the summit with a three nil victory over Athlone Town in Eamonn Deacy Park. Treaty United and Cobh Ramblers shared four goals in the Markets Field.

Third place Waterford secured a convincing three nil victory over fourth place Longford Town in Bishopsgate on Saturday evening.

                        P  W  D  L   F  A   G/D  Pts
Galway United          15 12  2  1  32 10   22   38
Cork City              15 11  3  1  34  8   26   36
Waterford              15  9  2  4  31 16   15   29
Longford Town          15  7  4  4  18 16    2   25
Treaty United          15  4  7  4  19 20   -1   19
Wexford                16  4  4  8  19 29  -10   16
Bray Wanderers         15  2  7  6  11 24  -13   13
Cobh Ramblers          15  2  3 10  17 35  -18    9
Athlone Town           15  0  2 13  13 36  -23    2

Midweek action overseas this week…19/05/2022

Tuesday
Liverpool included Caoimhin Kelleher on their substitute bench for their two one victory over Southampton at St Mary’s Stadium in the Premier League on Tuesday evening. Shane Long was an unused  substitute for the hosts.

The second leg of the Championship play-off semi-final between Nottingham Forest and Sheffield United took place in the City Ground on Tuesday evening with the hosts who held a two one advantage from the first leg at Bramall Lane increasing their advantage with an early goal. The ‘Blades’, with John Egan in central defence, fought back scoring twice to take the match to extra-time and subsequently penalties, Conor Hourihane was introduced in the second half of extra-time but disappointingly had his spot kick saved in the penalty shoot-out as his side as his side suffered defeat.

Thursday
Everton removed their Premier League relegation fears with a stirring recovery from a two goal half-time deficit against Crystal Palace with three second half goals to secure the three points in Goodison Park on Thursday evening. Seamus Coleman was again deployed in a back three for the victors.  Burnley included Nathan Collins and Kevin Long in their starting eleven with Dara Costelloe on their substitute bench for their battling one all draw at Aston Villa which lifted them out of the third relegation position on goal difference from Leeds United.

Loanee Jake O’Brien was a 105th minute substitute while fellow loanee Louie Barry, who represented Ireland at U15 and U16 level, started for Swindon Town who exited the play-offs following a 6-5 penalty shoot-out defeat after they went down to the only  goal after extra-time at Port Vale in the second leg of the League Two semi-final play-off which resulted in a two all aggregate scoreline. Harry Charsley was a 60th minute substitute for the hosts.

Friday
Former Airtricity League duo, Dan Cleary who started and unused substitute John Mahon were in the St Johnstone side which travelled to face Inverness Caledonian Thistle in the first leg of the   Scottish Premiership promotion/relegation play-off on Friday evening. The visiting ‘Saints’ took a two goal first half lead but the hosts replied in the second period with two of their own to secure a draw. The second leg is set for McDiarmid Park at 7.45pm on Monday evening. 

Weekend activity overseas…15/05/2022

Saturday
The FA Cup Final at Wembley Stadium between Chelsea and Liverpool saw a reprise of their League Cup Final meeting in February with the match ending scoreless after extra-time.  The ‘Reds’ were again victorious in the penalty shoot-out winning on a 6-5 scoreline. Caoimhin Kelleher was again an unused  substitute for the victors.

Scottish Premiership Champions Glasgow Celtic completed their league season with an emphatic six nil victory in their  home contest against Motherwell. James McCarthy was  a 62nd minute substitute for the hosts while Jake Carroll started and Ross Tierney was a 63rd minute substitute for the visitors. 

The first leg of the Championship play-off semi-final between Sheffield United  and Nottingham Forest took place at Bramall Lane where the visitors dominated taking a two goal lead but an added time goal from the host ‘Blades’ may offer some hope of a response in the second leg at the City Ground next week. John Egan and Enda Stevens started for the hosts while loanee Conor Hourihane was an unused  substitute.

Sunday 
The Premier League offered some interesting contests on Sunday with Tottenham Hotspur challenging for fourth place and a Champions League spot scoring the only goal from the penalty spot to defeat visitors Burnley who are fighting relegation. The visiting ‘Clarets’ included Kevin Long and Nathan Collins in their starting eleven while Dara Costelloe was an unused substitute. Everton and Seamus Coleman, who are also fighting relegation, welcomed Brentford to Goodison Park where the ‘Toffees’ took an early lead but then suffered  a red card dismissal on 19 minutes. Thereafter the visitors took command to run out three two victors. Leeds United, the third club in the relegation hot zone, scored an added time equaliser to secure a point against Brighton & Hove Albion at Elland Road where Shane Duffy and Evan Ferguson were unused substitutes for the visitors. 

Loanee Jake O’Brien was an added time substitute for Swindon Town who take a two one first leg lead to  Port Vale for the second leg of the League Two semi-final play-off. 

Josh Cullen and RSC Anderlecht went down to a two nil defeat by visitors Union Saint-Gilloise in the Belgian First Division.

Current leaders AIK Solna and Zack Elbouzedi played out a three all draw at second place Hammerby IF in the Swedish Allsvenskan with Elbouzedi substituted at half-time.

Airtricity League weekend action…14/05/2022

 

There were four Airtricity League Premier Division contests played on Friday evening with leaders Shamrock Rovers scoring a late winner to defeat second place Derry City in Tallaght Stadium and go four points clear at the summit. Dundalk came from behind to defeat visitors Bohemian by three goals to one in Oriel Park. Shelbourne scored  the only goal to defeat Drogheda United  in Tolka Park while bottom duo, Finn Harps and UCD locked horns in Finn Park where the visiting ‘Students’ scored a late winner for their first victory of the season.

Fourth place St Patrick’s Athletic played out a one all draw with fifth place Sligo Rovers in the Showgrounds on Saturday evening.

                    P  W  D  L   F  A   G/D  Pts
Shamrock Rovers        16 11  3  2  28 11   17   36
Derry City             16  9  5  2  29 12   17   32
Dundalk                15  6  7  2  23 13   10   25

St Patrick’s Athletic  16  7  4  5  20 13    7   25
Sligo Rovers           16  5  6  5  21 19    2   21
Bohemian               15  4  7  4  21 19    2   19
Shelbourne             15  5  3  7  13 20   -7   18
Drogheda United        15  3  4  8  16 29
  -13   13
Finn Harps             15  2  4  9  12 25  -13   10
UCD                    15  1  5  9  10 32  -22    8

 

The Airtricity League First Division continued on Friday evening with second place Galway United securing a four nil victory at Wexford while third place Waterford defeated Cobh Ramblers by four goals to two in the RSC. Treaty United played out a two all draw with Bray Wanderers in the Markets Field while Longford Town won the ‘Midlands Derby’ by two goals to one at Athlone Town. 

                        P  W  D  L   F  A   G/D  Pts
Cork City              14 11  2  1  33  7   26   35
Galway United          14 11  2  1  29 10   19   35
Waterford              14  8  2  4  28 16   12   26
Longford Town          13  7  3  3  18 13    5   24
Treaty United          13  4  5  4  17 18   -1   17
Wexford                15  4  3  8  18 28  -10   15
Bray Wanderers         15  2  7  6  11 24  -13   13
Cobh Ramblers          14  2  2 10  15 33  -18    8
Athlone Town           14  0  2 12  13 33  -20    2

 

Overseas action this week…12/05/2022

Monday
The second leg in the second League One semi-final play-off took place tonight in Hillsborough with Sunderland progressing to face Wycombe Wanderers in the play-off final at Wembley following a one all draw with Sheffield Wednesday for a two one aggregate success.  Denis Cirkin was again in the ‘Makems’ starting eleven. 

Tuesday
Second place Liverpool  recovered from conceding a third minute goal to secure a hard fought two one victory at Aston Villa in the Premier League this Tuesday evening. Caoimhin Kelleher, as expected, was included on the substitute bench.

Wednesday
The drama at the foot of the Premier League continued at Vicarage Road this evening when already relegated Watford played out a scoreless draw with visitors Everton and Seamus Coleman who are battling to avoid the third relegation position.

Glasgow Celtic secured the Scottish Premiership title when they played out a one all draw with Dundee United at Tannadice this Wednesday evening. James McCarthy was an unused substitute for the champions.

AIK Solna included Zack Elbouzedi in their starting eleven for this  evening’s two nil  Swedish Allsvenskan victory over visitors Malno FF.

Thursday
Following their four nil success in Antwerp on Sunday last, Josh Cullen and his RSC Anderlecht colleagues again faced Royal Antwerp in the Belgian First Division play-offs on Thursday evening in their Constant Vanden Stock Stadium. Tonight provided a tougher encounter with RSC progressing on a two one scoreline. 

Friday
The first leg of the first Championship semi-final play-off between Luton Town and Huddersfield Town is set for Kenilworth Road at 7.45pm on Friday evening with Peter Kioso  expected to be in the ‘Hatters’ matchday squad.
 

Monday night in the Airtricity League…09/05/2022

The four clubs set to represent Ireland in European competition this summer were in Airtricity League Premier Division action this Monday evening. Shamrock Rovers leapfrogged Derry City at the summit with a three one victory over Sligo Rovers in Tallaght Stadium while Derry City were held to a scoreless draw by St Patrick’s Athletic in the Ryan McBride Brandywell Stadium. Star of the Show in Tallaght was half-time substitute Graham Burke who scored all three second half goals for the  ‘Hoops’.

                    P  W  D  L   F  A   G/D  Pts
Shamrock Rovers        15 10  3  2  27 11   16   33
Derry City             15  9  5  1  29 11   18   31

St Patrick’s Athletic  15  7  3  5  19 12    7   24
Dundalk                14  5  7  2  20 12    8   22
Sligo Rovers           15  5  5  5  20 18    2   20
Bohemian               14  4  7  3  20 16    4   19
Shelbourne             14  4  3  7  12 20   -8   15
Drogheda United        14  3  4  7  16 28
  -12   13
Finn Harps             14  2  4  8  12 24  -12   10
UCD                    14  0  5  9   9 32  -23    5

Overseas action this weekend…08/05/2022

Saturday
The Premier League featured Brentford hosting Southampton on Saturday afternoon with Shane Long an unused substitute for the ‘Saints’ who suffered  a three nil defeat . Burnley included Nathan Collins in their starting eleven while Kevin Long was a 47th minute substitute as they went down to a three one defeat by visitors Aston Villa. Dara Costelloe was an unused substitute for the hosts.  There was a 5.30pm kick-off for the meeting of Brighton & Hove Albion and Manchester United at the AMEX Stadium where the hosts secured a four nil victory. Shane Duffy and Evan Ferguson were unused substitutes for the hosts.  Liverpool  included Caoimhin Kelleher on their bench for their one all draw with visitors Tottenham Hotspur.

The Scottish Premiership saw Glasgow Celtic move closer to  the title when they came from behind to defeat visitors Heart of Midlothian by four goals to one. James McCarthy was an unused  substitute for the hosts. St Mirren were without injured loanee Connor Ronan who has returned  to parent club Wolverhampton Wanderers for treatment. Joe Shaughnessy and Conor McCarthy started their two nil victory over  visitors Dundee.

The regular Championship season reached a finale on Saturday with all matches kicking off at 12.30pm. Promoted AFC Bournemouth included Mark Travers, Robbie Brady and Gavin Kilkenny in their starting eleven for their one nil victory over visitors Millwall and Dan McNamara. Relegated Derby County included young Eiran Cashin and Jason Knight in their starting eleven while Festy Ebosele, whose final game it was  for the ‘Rams’ as he joins Italian club Udinese this summer, was  a 65th minute substitute  for the visit of Cardiff City and their Irish trio of Joel Bagan, who started and unused  substitutes  Mark McGuinness and James Collins. Relegated Peterborough United included Sam Szmodics and Jack Taylor in their starting eleven for their five nil drubbing of visitors Blackpool with Szmodics scoring twice and Taylor scoring the fifth goal. Alan Browne started and scored  for Preston North End in their four one victory over Middlesbrough for whom loanee Aaron Connolly was a 66th minute substitute. Greg Cunningham and Sean Maguire were unused substitutes  for the victors. Sheffield United included John Egan and Enda Stevens in their side for their four nil victory over champions Fulham with Stevens finding the  net. Loanee Conor Hourihane was a 75th minute substitute for the ‘Blades’. Swansea City included Ryan Manning, Michael Obafemi and loanee Cyrus Christie in their side for their one nil defeat by  visitors QPR.  West Bromwich Albion named Dara O’Shea and Jayson Molumby in their starting eleven with Callum Robinson a 71st minute substitute in their four nil victory over visitors Barnsley.

The Championship play-off semi-finals will see Luton Town host Huddersfield Town on Friday the 13th May at 7.45pm with the reverse fixture scheduled  for Monday the 16th May at 7.45pm while Sheffield United will take on Nottingham Forest at 3pm on Saturday the 14th May with the second leg set for Tuesday the 17th May at 7.45pm. 

Despite their one nil victory at Leyton Orient, Lee O’Connor and his Tranmere Rovers colleagues missed out on the League Two play-off positions while Swindon Town and their loanee Jake O’Brien, reached  the play-offs with a three nil victory at Walsall.

The League Two play-off semi-finals will see Mansfield Town host Northampton Town on Saturday the 14th May at 7.45pm with the reverse fixture scheduled for Wednesday the 18th May at 7.45pm while Swindon Town will take on Port Vale at noon on Sunday  the 15th May with the second leg set for Thursday the 19th May at 7.45pm. 

AIK Solna and Zack Elbouzedi were in Swedish Allsvenskan action when they played host to IFK Goteborg at 2pm on Saturday afternoon and secured  a one nil victory.

Sunday
Everton and captain Seamus Coleman continued their Premier League survival battle when they travelled to Leicester City for a 2pm kick-off on Sunday afternoon where they collected all three points with a two one victory.

The second leg in the first League One semi-final play-off took place in Stadium MK on Sunday evening with Wycombe Wanderers and Daryl Horgan going through to the play-off final on a two one aggregate success against MK Dons and their Irish trio of Warren O’Hora and loanees Conor Coventry and Troy Parrott. The hosts, seeking to overturn their two nil first leg deficit, dominated throughout and  a fine headed goal by Parrott  gave them hope but despite their total dominance they could not find the second goal to force extra-time.

Josh Cullen and his RSC Anderlecht colleagues travelled to face Royal Antwerp in the Belgian First Division on Sunday afternoon where they secured  a four nil victory.