It may seem a little hasty to wring hands and shake heads about the domination of English football’s big six. It is a little over two years since Leicester City secured arguably the most unexpected title victory in football history, and certainly in the history of the English game.
And then there was one. Well, two actually, but the World Cup third-place play-off is definitely one of those nominally competitive fixtures which presents a fairly robust challenge to my old friend Declan Lynch’s wise maxim that there’s never a good reason not to watch a football match.
The vagaries of the group stage format at a Fifa World Cup were laid bare in the final round of fixtures as England’s reserves laboured to a 1-0 defeat against Belgium, safe in the knowledge that finishing second in Group G probably opens up a better route to the final.
With Everton’s first proper shot of the afternoon resting comfortably in the back of Claudio Bravo’s net after 34 minutes, it was hard not to think City were already well on their way to claiming a thoroughly unwanted league double on Merseyside this season, writes.
It’s taken seven years, but the Republic of Ireland will finally avail of the opportunity to exorcise some of the ghosts from the infamous ‘Hand of Gaul’ game at the Stade de France this day week when they open their Euro 2016 account against Sweden.
The Irish Ladies Close Championship began yesterday around the Old Course at Lahinch, Co Clare, where competitors played 36 holes strokeplay. The championship course, measuring 5,968 yards, was in immaculate condition and good scores were there for the taking.
The Leinster Council’s decision to choose Nowlan Park as the venue for Dublin’s opening defence of their provincial title may have come from left-field, but the Kilkenny ground will not be virgin territory for all of Jim Gavin’s footballers.