Potential Ireland recruit Patrick Bamford continued his recent rich vein of form on Saturday, netting an early winner as promoting-chasing Leeds won 1-0 at Bristol City.
Bamford’s fourth goal in his last four games came at the end of a week in which Ireland manager Mick McCarthy confirmed that the English-born striker had indicated a desire to represent Ireland.
Though he represented Ireland at U18 level, Bamford has since played for England at the same grade as well at U19, and U21 level.
But he has yet to make a senior appearance, meaning he is still eligible to represent a country for which he qualifies through his maternal grandparents.
Last week, McCarthy indicated a desire to meet Bamford as soon as possible to finalise a deal and the 25-year-old illustrated the sort of poacher’s instinct Ireland are crying out for on Saturday.
While McCarthy is busy preparing for the Euro 2020 doubleheader against Gibraltar and Georgia, Martin O’Neill, his predecessor in the Ireland hot-seat, is attempting to lead Nottingham Forest to the play-offs.
That ambition was boosted on Saturday as Forest score three times in a devastating 10-minute spell to beat Hull City and move within two points of the top six.
“We’re in the (play-off) battle. It’s a still a long road, but the players have a lot of confidence about themselves,” O’Neill said.
“These next two games (at home to Aston Villa and away to Ipswich) are big for us before the international break, but at least that’s another three points.
“We’ll take them and we’ll be delighted with them. That’s four consecutive victories here and it was a big win.” In League One, Eoin Doyle netted in Bradford’s 3-1 win over Peterborough, Shane McLoughlin scored in Wimbledon’s 2-0 win over Doncaster Rovers, Rob Kiernan grabbed a rare goal as Southend drew 2-2 at Blackpool while Ronan Curtis struck in a losing cause, Portsmouth going down to a 2-1 defeat at Charlton.
In the Scottish Premiership, Joe Shaughnessy scored for St Johnstone but they lost 3-1 at Livingston.