How the Irish fared: Wes Hoolahan weaves magic again

Wes Hoolahan was at his mesmeric best at the weekend, scoring twice as Norwich hammered play-off contenders Reading 7-1.

How the Irish fared: Wes Hoolahan weaves magic again

Hoolahan made it 2-0 to the Canaries after 15 minutes before his 50th goal for the club made it 6-1 after just 41 minutes. For good measure, he also provided an assist.

Not surprisingly, Norwich caretaker manager Alan Irvine was quick to hail a player he has long admired.

“He’s an outstanding player,” Irvine said. “I tried to sign Wes when I was at Preston and he was at Blackpool.

“He’s a very gifted player and he’s a great professional.”

There was no shortage of love for the 34-year-old on Twitter either. One fan wrote: “Enjoy this fantastic person while you can. One day you’ll tell your grandkids you were alive to watch Wes Hoolahan. 1 day it’ll end.” Another added: “I don’t follow a god. I follow Wes Hoolahan.”

Sadly, it’s highly unlikely this ‘god’ will be strutting his stuff in the Premier League next season as Norwich remain nine points off a Championship play-off spot with just five games of the regular season remaining.

The only other Irish scorer in Saturday’s Championship action was Anthony Forde but his goal counted for nought as already-relegated Rotherham lost 3-2 at struggling Wigan.

It was another tough weekend for Mick McCarthy as Ipswich crashed to a 3-1 defeat at Fulham.

McCarthy said: “It’s frustrating, in the second half we had three great chances. But it’s the tale of our season.”

Chris Hughton’s Brighton — 2-1 winners over QPR on Friday night — ended the weekend at the summit after Newcastle missed the chance to reclaim top spot following a 2-1 defeat at Sheffield Wednesday.

In League One, Bournemouth loanee Joe Quigley scored his first league goal as Gillingham drew 1-1 at home to Millwall.

In League Two, a Graham Carey penalty helped Plymouth all but secure automatic promotion as the Pilgrims came from behind to beat Crawley 2-1. Plymouth’s win means they are now 12 points clear of fourth-placed Luton with only five games left.

Carey’s has been involved in 27 of their 61 league goals this season, scoring 13 and providing 14 assists, stats that suggest he is better than League Two level.

Elsewhere, Pádraig Amond netted as Hartlepool drew 1-1 at Morecambe.

In the Scottish Premiership, Graham Cummins scored as Johnstone won 3-0 at Inverness.

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