Much as he was satisfied with the ample positives of Ireland’s 3-1 win against New Zealand, arguably the biggest lesson Mick McCarthy will take from that sideshow game into Monday’s crunch encounter with Denmark is that some of the blemishes of Thursday’s performance could, if not eliminated, prove fatal against Christian Eriksen and company.
Well, yes, and here we go again… But before we get into ‘Dane-ja vu’ or even ‘Oh, Dane-ger here’ territory, a word of two about the headlines that got away on account of Troy Parrott being so inconsiderate towards us hacks as to refrain from crowning his senior debut, at the ridiculously tender age of 17, with the goal or two or even three which we were all demanding.
Donegal-town-based Garda Joanne Doherty said she would never forget the night she and Robbie McCallion were investigating a car theft when he was run down by a driver attempting to escape the scene.
Seeing Joe Schmidt is happy to do so, let’s start with Jack Carty. Even as recently as a week ago, if an Irish team to face the World Cup hosts had been named with Jack at 10, the general reaction might be best characterised by raised eyebrows.
The 2019 Rugby World Cup is finally underway and before too long, it will be Ireland’s turn to get their campaign up and running. It will hardly be the gentlest of introductions to this global gathering of the sport’s greatest exponents, though, and the fact that Joe Schmidt’s men have to face Six Nations rivals Scotland first up tomorrow has shaped everything that has gone before this summer.
Richard Dunne reckons the time is right to fast-track Troy Parrott into the senior international set-up after the 17-year-old striker took another major step forward by setting up a goal on his debut for Spurs, as they beat Juventus 3-2 in a friendly on Sunday.
With Robbie Keane weighing up an offer to come in as Jonathan Woodgate’s assistant at Middlesbrough — a move which, of crucial importance, he stresses, would allow him to continue in his role as a coach on Mick McCarthy’s Ireland staff — the 38-year-old Dubliner is on the brink of taking another step along the road he has long intended to follow, from playing to coaching and, ultimately, to management.