The deliberate success of Cork City

Last night Cork City took advantage of Dundalk’s slip up in Bray to go one point clear at the top of the SSE Airtricity Premier Division. A rather incredible, if fortuitous, goal from Billy Dennehy gave John Caulfield’s side the three points and it was richly deserved. Amazingly, the league will now be decided on the final day as the […]

Peculiar Ireland scarves for sale

When there is a big international football match on in Dublin it’s common to see people attempting to sell the dreaded half-and-half scarves and other match-day regalia on the way to Lansdowne Road. German street vendors are no different and it seems they were keen to tap in to the inner Irish republican of the travelling Irish support in Gelsenkirchen […]

Kroos but no cigar

Like a lot of footballers on the day of a game, Real Madrid star Toni Kroos posted a message on Twitter revealing his excitement. In a post delivered to to 1.64 million followers ahead of Germany’s crucial Euro 2016 qualification clash against the Republic of Ireland, Kroos exclaimed: “Matchday !!!”  followed by the German word “wichtig”, meaning important. However, the […]

“That was certainly one of those moments”

On the day that the Republic of Ireland face Germany in Euro 2016 qualification, it is only right to reminisce on that moment when 21-year-old Robbie Keane snatched a draw from Die Mannschaft at the 2002 FIFA World Cup in Japan. Ironically, the goal itself represents an enduring victory for the reviled ‘Route One’ brand of football but, when all […]

Sporting administrator or celebrity?

The recent appearances of Football Association of Ireland (FAI) chief executive John Delaney in the media have been perplexing to say the least. An administrator at the head of a major Irish sporting body, he has suddenly morphed into a celebrity and one cannot help but view the grotesque transformation as a cynical ploy. In the immediate aftermath of the […]

One of the complaints levelled against the League of Ireland is that the ‘product’ isn’t enough to entice supporters through the turnstiles. Those who might otherwise be persuaded to attend a game in Ireland’s domestic league, it is said, are not going to be attracted to half-full, semi-delapidated venues in order to watch the average game in the SSE Airtricity […]

The ‘real’ Roy Keane

Amid the inevitable furore and the tiresome lampooning that surrounded the launch of his new book, there were a few small moments in particular that revealed so much about Roy Keane. I had contacted Orion weeks in advance of the launch of The Second Half to enquire about potential serialisation only to be told that there would be none prior […]