It’s raining goals and this week’s Emerald Exiles column has just got drenched. Five players contributed seven goals in five different countries across four continents over the weekend. Impressed yet?
In the Goals
Remember Barry Maguire? After scoring for FC Utrecht against Celtic in the Europa League a few seasons back, this Eredivisie based midfield man was earmarked as a potential senior Ireland cap. He flew to Dublin, even met with Giovanni Trapattoni. A move to VVV Venlo followed, as did injury troubles and relegation. Maguire fell off the radar.
Well, this year he’s back. On Monday night, Maguire scored two goals and made the other two in FC Den Bosch’s 4-1 win over PSV reserves in the Dutch second tier. Since returning to his boyhood club last September, the Dutch-Irish playmaker has found his fitness and form and was imperious as Den Bosch moved to within three points of third place in the race for promotion.
In the US of A, Robbie Keane scored one of the less aesthetically pleasing goals of his long career to date in LA Galaxy’s 3-0 win over Chivas in the MLS ‘SuperClasico’. Keane bundled in a first half opener to help the Galaxy to a first league win of the season on their third attempt.
Former Cork City and Sunderland striker Roy O’Donovan bagged his third and fourth goals of the campaign for Brunei DPMM in Singapore’s S League on Sunday. O’Donovan and ex-Rebel Army teammate Joe Gamble make up two of Brunei’s five international player quota this term and have contributed to an impressive start for Steve Kean’s (of Blackburn fame) side.
Down Under, Liam Miller scored a rare goal for A-League Premiers Brisbane Roar as they came away from Western Sydney Wanderers with a 1-1 draw. Miller finished after the ball feel kindly to him in the penalty area for his third of the regular season.
While not strictly overseas, there were six exiles in Sue Ronan’s Ireland women’s squad that were left heartbroken by a last gasp 3-2 defeat to Germany in World Cup qualifiers on Saturday. Megan Campbell of Florida State University was the star on the day, with her long throws leading to both Irish goals. Eskilstuna United’s Louise Quinn headed in the first early on before late drama ended in German victory.
Shannon Smyth (Amazon Grimstad) and Fiona O’Sullivan (SC Freiburg) started the game while Diane Caldwell (Avaldsnes) was a late substitute. Sandviken’s Ruesha Littlejohn was unused.
Across The Pond
Northern Ireland international Jonny Steele had an eventful Saturday night in the MLS. Minus Thierry Henry, New York Red Bulls drew 2-2 with Montreal Impact with Larne man Steele scoring the first and making the second.
First, he met Lloyd Sam’s cross to tap home from close range before finding Peguy Luyindula for the second before half time.
Also on Saturday, Andy O’Brien and Vancouver Whitecaps suffered their first defeat of the MLS season, losing 2-1 to Colorado Rapids, featuring Shane O’Neill. Both centre backs played 90 minutes as Rapids moved within a point of Whitecaps in the Western Conference.
Cillian Sheridan started once again for APOEL Nicosia but couldn’t find the net in their scoreless draw with local rivals Omonia Nicosia. The Cavan striker has started all of APOEL’s final phase league games to date with top goalscorer Tomas De Vincenti injured but he couldn’t add to his goal last week with a winner here.
In the Ukraine, Darren O’Dea returned from a thigh injury but had to be content with a place on the bench as Metalurh Donetsk’s quest for European qualification was dealt a further blow with a 0-0 draw with Hoverla. Republic of Ireland defender O’Dea has made ten appearances this season, scoring once.
And (Very Briefly) The Rest….
• Kevin Walker returned to Superettan action at the weekend, captaining GIF Sundsvall to an opening day 1-0 win over Jonkopings Sodra.
• Billy Mehmet played on both Friday and Monday, winning the former and losing the latter as Kedah FA’s inconsistent start to the Malaysian Premier League continued.
• Meanwhile there were wins for Kyle Lafferty (Palermo) in Serie B and Aodhan Quinn (Orlando City) in the USLPro but defeats for Selcuk Tidim (Hansa Rostock II) in Germany and Sean McDermott in Norway. The Republic of Ireland Under 21 goalkeeper was unused.
• In France’s CFA 2, Finnish-Irish defender Daniel O’Shaughnessy played as FC Metz’ reserves drew 1-1 with Troyes II.