Nine Irish players plundered twelve goals across six countries in four continents over the weekend. The diaspora done good. It’s The Emerald Exiles weekly round-up.
In The Goals
Cillian Sheridan was restored to the APOEL Nicosia line-up for Sunday’s visit of Anorthosis and he’ll be sure of keeping his place for next week’s league showdown and the following week’s Coca-Cola Cup final after an 8-1 win reignited their Cypriot double dream.
As far as dreams go, there’s few better that a Cypriot double one. The Cavan man scored APOEL’s seventh of the day, but not before he won a first half penalty and set up one of Tomas De Vincenti’s three first half strikes with a brilliant flick into the Argentinean’s path. After that recent spell on the sidelines, Sheridan can now hope his sixth goal of the season will secure his place in the team in a defining two week period for Cyprus’ most illustrious side.
Should the striker extend his stay beyond this summer, European football will await but whether it’s Champions League or Europa League will depend on whether APOEL can compete an unlikely title smash and grab next week.
Staying in Europe, Germany proved a fertile ground for goal-getting over the weekend. On his last appearance for Union Berlin in the Bundesliga 2, former Republic of Ireland Under 21 cap Patrick Kohlmann scored the equaliser in a 1-1 draw with 1860 Munich. The left back struck with a swerving shot from just outside the box in the second half to sign off after six years of service at the club.
Ireland WNT striker Fiona O’Sullivan followed up her goal in last week’s defeat to Russia by netting a consolation in Freibrg’s 2-3 defeat to Wolfsburg in the Frauen Bundesliga on Sunday. The American-born forward slotted home a penalty in injury time to reduce the arrears. In the Nord-Nordest Oberliga, Under 21 cap Selcuk Tidim was on target in Hansa Rostock reserves 5-3 win over FC Strausberg.
You’d think Robbie Keane would be a happy chap having bagged five goals so far this season, with the latest in LA Galaxy’s 1-1 draw with Portland on Sunday afternoon but no so, especially as his injury time strike was then cancelled out by an even later equaliser.
The point leaves Galaxy seventh in the nine team MLS Western Conference, with just two wins to date. Ireland’s all time record goalscorer has already voiced his anger at his side’s defensive deficiencies this term and this result won’t improve his mood. Still, he has a summer jaunt with Ireland to look forward to. If three weeks with Conor Sammon won’t cheer him up, nothing will.
In Sweden, Kevin Walker, he of Pop Idol fame, scored his second goal in three games to lift GIF Sundavall six points clear at the top of the Superettan. Walker’s late goal in the 4-1 win over Degerfors puts the early season promotion favourites in pole position to avenge last season’s playoff defeat with automatic entry to the Allsvenskan.
The Swedish-Irish midfielder, whose family hail from Carlow, now captains GIF too.
At The Double
Wait. There’s more. In Malaysia, Roy O’Donovan added another brace to his burgeoning goal collection for Brunei DPMM as they brushed aside Tanjong Pagar United 4-0 on Friday. O’Donovan and Joe Gamble were resplendent in….that old Arsenal kit from the early 1990s as the striker struck his ninth and tenth goals of a fruitful season.
Not a million miles away in Malaysia, former Ireland Under 21 striker Billy Mehmet was also at the double, scoring twice in the second half as KEDAH FA ran riot in a 7-2 defeat of PBAPP in the second tier while ‘Down Under’ a man familiar to many a League of Ireland fan, Anto Flood, continued his recent run of good form, also scoring two in Dunbar Rovers win over Pagewood.
And The Rest….
Diane Caldwell played 82 minutes in Avaldsnes scoreless draw with Stabæk in Norway’s Tippeligaen while Louise Quinn helped Eskilstuna United to within a point of the Swedish Damallsvenskan in their 1-1 draw with Göteborg FC. Emma Salomonsson was also in action for Jitex BK in the same division.
Andy O’Brien helped marshalled the Vancouver Whitecaps defence to a first clean sheet in 11 games on Saturday in a 1-0 win over Columbus Crew. Cork born defender Shane O’Neill returned to the Colorado Rapids starting line-up.
There was playoff heartbreak for Barry Maguire’s FC Den Bosch in the Netherlands after they lost 2-5 on aggregate to Excelsior despite opening the scoring in the second leg when Maguire played in Ralf Seutjiens.
Metalurh Donetsk put their Europa League qualification hopes into their own hands ahead of next week’s final round of games in the Ukrainian Premier League with a 2-0 win over Zaporizhya. Darren O’Dea was unused.
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