In the Championship on Friday evening, Millwall included Jayson Molumby in their starting eleven and he produced another excellent performance as his side stunned their hosts Nottingham Forest with a three nil victory. Alex Pearce was an 80th minutes substitute for the ‘Lions’ while Aiden O’Brien and the fit again Shaun Williams remained on the substitute bench.
Ipswich Town and Alan Judge failed to get their League One promotion challenge back on track when they went down to a one nil home defeat by fellow promotion aspirants Fleetwood Town at Portman Road on Tuesday evening. The victorious visitors included Glenn Whelan and Paddy Madden in their starting eleven.
The 2020/21 UEFA Nations League draw took place at the Beurs van Berlage Conference Centre in Amsterdam at 6pm (5pm Irish time) this Tuesday afternoon.
Ireland were third seeds and will participate in League B Group 4 alongside Wales, Finland and Bulgaria.
The fixtures will take place this Autumn on the folowing dates:-
Matchday 1: Thursday 3 September 2020
19.45 Bulgaria v Ireland 19.45 Finland v Wales
Matchday 2: Sunday 6 September 2020
14.00 Wales v Bulgaria 17.00 Ireland v Finland
Matchday 3: Saturday 10 October 2020
14.00 Ireland v Wales 17.00 Finland v Bulgaria
Matchday 4: Tuesday 13 October 2020
19.45 Bulgaria v Wales 19.45 Finland v Ireland
Matchday 5: Friday 13 November 2020
19.45 Bulgaria v Finland 19.45 Wales v Ireland
Matchday 6: Monday 16 November 2020
19.45 Ireland v Bulgaria 19.45 Wales v Finland
Finals: 2, 3, 6 June 2021
The draw for the quarter-finals of the FA Cup took place on Wednesday evening and produced the following pairings:-
Leicester City v Chelsea
Newcastle United v Manchester City
Norwich City v Manchester United
Sheffield United v Arsenal
The ties are scheduled for the 21st/22nd March 2020
The remaining tie between Championship side Derby County and Premier League Manchester United went the way of the Premier League side by three goals to nil in Pride Park on Thursday evening, where Jason Knight completed the full ninety minutes for the hosts.
Premier League side Leicester City scored the only goal to defeat Championship outfit Birmingham City for whom loanee Scott Hogan was in action from the start. Nineteen year old left back Ryan Burke was an unused substitute for the visitors. It was interesting to see teenage duo Troy Parrott and Adam Idah being involved when Tottenham Hotspur played host to fellow Premier League side Norwich City. The match ended in a one all draw after extra-time with the ‘Canaries’ prevailing in the penalty shoot-out by three goals to two. Idah entered the fray on 72 minutes and worked tirelessly throughout his 50 or so minutes of action. He then capped his performance with an excellent penalty conversion in the shoot-out. Parrott was introduced for the final 24 minutes of extra-time and was quite prominent during his short cameo. He was to suffer disappointment in the penalty shoot-out when his weak spot-kick was easily saved.
Championship side Reading took Premier League Sheffield United to extra-time before exiting the cup following a two one defeat on Tuesday evening. John Egan and David McGoldrick, who scored after just two minutes, started for the visiting ‘Blades’ but the recently injured Enda Stevens missed out. Championship leaders West Bromwich Albion included Dara O’Shea in their starting eleven for the visit of Premier League outfit Newcastle United for whom goalkeeper Rob Elliot was named on the substitute bench. The visiting ‘Magpies’ took a three goal lead but while the host ‘Baggies’ fought back to score twice, it was too little too late.
The 5th round of the FA Cup kicked off on Monday evening with League One side Portsmouth facing Premier League Arsenal at Fratton Park. Both sides made several changes to their usual starting elevens with Ronan Curtis and Sean Raggett named on the substitute bench for the hosts while Marcus Harness was given a rare starting opportunity on the left flank. While Arsenal took the lead in first half added time, Harness had a particularly impressive half. Arsenal increased their lead early in the second half and Harness was replaced by Curtis midway through the half. There was to be no late drama and Arsenal go through to the quarter-final stage.
The Premier League continued on Sunday afternoon with Everton and Manchester United playing out a feisty one all draw at Goodison Park. Seamus Coleman started for the hosts but was forced off through injury after 28 minutes. Tottenham Hotspur went down to a three two defeat by Wolverhampton Wanderers with Matt Doherty starting and scoring for the visitors while Troy Parrott was introduced from the host substitute bench for the final minutes.
League Cup Final
The League Cup Final took place in Wembley Stadium this afternoon between holders Manchester City and Aston Villa and ended in a hard fought two one victory for the holders. Conor Hourihane was named on the ‘Villans’ substitute bench and entered the fray on 70 minutes.
Shane Duffy and Aaron Connolly were both absent from the Brighton & Hove Albion squad for the Premier League visit of Crystal Palace and James McCarthy to the AMEX Stadium at 12.30pm. The visiting ‘Eagles’ scored the only goal for victory with McCarthy withdrawn at half-time because of injury. Newcastle United will be without the injured Ciaran Clark for some time and today ‘The Magpies’ played out a scoreless draw with visitors Burnley who included Jeff Hendrick in their starting eleven with Robbie Brady and Kevin Long unused on the substitute bench. West Ham United defeated visitors Southampton by three goals to one at the London Stadium where Darren Randolph was an unused substitute for the hosts while Shane Long, Michael Obafemi and Will Smallbone all started for the visitors with Obafemi scoring their goal.
In the early Championship kick-off, Sean McLoughlin was in the starting eleven for Hull City who went down to a four nil home defeat by Leeds United. Fulham included Harry Arter in their starting eleven with Cyrus Christie introduced from the substitute bench after just 8 minutes as they defeated visitors Preston North End and their duo of Alan Browne and Sean Maguire by two goals to nil. Charlton Athletic included Josh Cullen and loanee Aiden McGeady in their starting eleven as they crashed to a four nil defeat at Huddersfield Town. James Collins scored an added time penalty for Luton Town to earn a one all draw with visitors Stoke City and 85th minute substitute Nathan Collins at Kenilworth Road. Millwall included Jayson Molumby in their starting eleven with Aiden O’Brien a very late substitute for the one all draw with visitors Bristol City and Callum O’Dowda. QPR included Ryan Manning in their starting eleven with Conor Masterson unused on the bench for the two all Loftus Road draw with visitors Birmingham City and Scott Hogan who scored both of their goals. Hillsborough hosted the meeting of Sheffield Wednesday and Derby County which saw the visitors prevail by three goals to one with Jason Knight scoring their third goal. Dara O’Shea and Callum Robinson retained their starting positions for leaders West Bromwich Albion who went down to a shock one nil defeat by Wigan Athletic at the Hawthorns.
U21 midfielder Connor Ronan, on loan at Blackpool, started against Ipswich Town at Bloomfield Road where Alan Judge was a 60th minute substitute for the visitors who went down to a two one defeat. Bristol Rovers went down to a one nil defeat by visitors Shrewsbury Town and loanee goalkeeper Max O’Leary at the Memorial Ground. Fellow netminder Kieran O’Hara was in fine form for Burton Albion who held promotion chasing Peterborough United and U21 midfielder Jack Taylor to a one all draw at the Pirelli Stadium. Thomas O’Connor was in the Gillingham side for the surprise two one defeat by visitors AFC Wimbledon. Chiedoze Ogbene was in the Rotherham United side held to a one all draw by visitors MK Dons.
Match Series Four in the Airtricity League Premier Division took place on Friday evening with four completed fixtures. RTE 2 brought live coverage of the top of the table clash between Shamrock Rovers and Dundalk from Tallaght Stadium where the hosts came from behind to record a three two victory and go three points clear at the top of the table. Cork City scored their first goal of the season to earn their first points with a one nil victory over visitors Finn Harps in Turner’s Cross. Derry City defeated Bohemian by two goals to nil in the Brandywell while Shelbourne came out on top with the only goal against St Patrick’s Athletic in Tolka Park.
The contest scheduled for Saturday evening between Sligo Rovers and Waterford has been postponed in light of the weather warning issued in relation to the incoming Storm Jorge.
There were also four fixtures completed in match series two of the Airtricity League First Division. Athlone Town went down to a three one defeat by visitors Cabinteely while Bray Wanderers were two nil victors over Wexford in the Carlisle Grounds. Drogheda United and Longford Town locked horns at United Park with the visitors scoring the only goal for victory. UCD also scored the only goal to collect the points against visitors Cobh Ramblers at the Bowl.
The remaining fixture between Shamrock Rovers II and Galway United took place at Tallaght Stadium on Saturday afternoon and ended in a one all draw.
There were five British clubs in Europa League Round of 32 second leg action this midweek.
The only active Irish involvement was in Spain where Matt Doherty was in action and scored for Wolverhampton Wanderers who went down to a three two defeat by Espanol on the night but progressed on a six three aggregate, courtesy of their four nil first leg victory. Glasgow Rangers progressed to the next round with a one nil victory over Sporting Braga in Portugal for a four two aggregate success but fellow Scottish side Glasgow Celtic crashed to a three one home defeat by FC Copenhagen and exit the competition as do Arsenal who went down to a two one home defeat by Olympiakos of Greece and were eliminated on the away goals rule. Also through to the next stage are Manchester United who defeated Club Bruges by five goals to nil at Old Trafford for a six one aggregate success.
The draw for the Round of 16 sees Glasgow Rangers drawn against Bayer Leverkusen with the first leg at Ibrox Park, Manchester United will face LASK of Austria with the first leg away and Wolverhampton Wanderers will travel to face Olympiakos in the first leg. The ties are scheduled for the 12th and 19th March 2020.
There was further Championship action on Wednesday evening with Blackburn Rovers and Daragh Lenihan facing Stoke City and Nathan Collins in a scoreless draw at Ewood Park. Fulham included Harry Arter in their starting eleven with Cyrus Christie unused on the substitute bench for their one nil victory over Craven Cottage visitors Swansea City. The New Den hosted a dull goal less draw between Millwall and Birmingham City with Jayson Molumby and Alex Pearce in the starting eleven for the hosts while loanee Scott Hogan started for the visitors. Aiden O’Brien was unused on the substitute bench for the ‘Lions’. Ireland Assistant Manager Terry Connor was believed to be in attendance at Hillsborough for the clash of Sheffield Wednesday and visitors Charlton Athletic who included Josh Cullen in their starting eleven as they went down to a one nil added time defeat.
Luton Town and James Collins collected three valuable points in their battle to avoid relegation from the Championship when they defeated visitors Brentford by two goals to one at Kenilworth Road on Tuesday evening. Ryan Manning started with Conor Masterson unused on the substitute bench for QPR who defeated visitors Derby County by two goals to one at Loftus Road where Jason Knight was an unused substitute for the visitors. Mick McCarthy was believed to have been in attendance at Loftus Road. League leaders West Bromwich Albion included Dara O’Shea and Callum Robinson in their starting eleven for the two nil victory over visitors Preston North End and their Irish duo of Alan Browne and Sean Maguire.
Glenn Whelan and Paddy Madden were in the Fleetwood Town side which played out a one all draw with Sunderland at the Stadium of Light in League One on Tuesday evening. Wolverhampton Wanderers loanee Connor Ronan scored the opening goal for Blackpool who defeated Lancashire rivals Bolton Wanderers by two goals to one at Bloomfield Road. Chiedoze Ogbene was in the Rotherham United side for the top of the table clash with Coventry City at St Andrew’s which ended in a one all draw. Ronan Curtis started for Portsmouth who defeated visitors MK Dons by three goals to one at Fratton Park.
Conor McCarthy and Jamie McGrath both started for St Mirren who secured a two one Scottish Premiership victory over Motherwell at Fir Park.