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Football

20th Feb 2022

Irish abroad: Shane’s Long wait for a goal sinks Everton

Luke Jennings

Shane Long

Irish talent flourished across the UK over the weekend

Shane Long got his first Premier League goal in two years as Evan Ferguson made his Brighton debut. Elsewhere Joel Bagen, Eiran Cashin, and Jake Doyle-Hayes were crucial for their clubs in action.

Super Shane Long gets off the mark.

The 35-year-old nodded home Southampton’s second goal in a 2-0 win against Everton at St. Mary’s.

Saints boss Ralph Hassenhuttl labeled Long as a “role model” following the victory. “Longyโ€™s a very, very important player for our team: heโ€™s fantastic in the dressing room. I think he knows very well what role he has to play now at this age. Heโ€™s a role model for how you should act.”

The Tipperary man will be hoping to kick on now and push his way back into Stephen Kenny’s Ireland plans for 2022. Long has scored 55 Premier League goals during his career. The Southampton striker would be a welcome addition to the international squad as he has the CV to mentor the younger pros.

Shane Long

Evan Ferguson makes his Premier League debut.

The 17-year-old came off the bench for Brighton against Burnley in the 68th minute. The Seagulls lost the game 3-0, however, Ferguson did not look out of place when he joined the play.

Ireland under-21 boss Jim Crawford labeled the Dubliner as “mature beyond his years” as he climbs the footballing ranks.

The Ireland under-21 international initially burst onto the scene when he made his senior debut for Bohemians against Chelsea as a 14-year-old. That made him the youngest player to play for The Gypsies in their history.

Joel Bagen can’t stop scoring.

The Cardiff City left-back did not have a goal to his name last week. Now he has three goals in as many games for The Bluebirds.

Cardiff played host to Blackpool on Saturday as they drew the match 1-1. The result leaves Bagen’s side 15 points clear of Derby outside the relegation zone.

Manager Steve Morrison described the 20-year-old as a wing-back as his attacking threat has produced goals against Millwall, Coventry City, and Blackpool. “Joel decided to go one step further and go to the penalty spot and it was a lovely finish.”

Cardiff midfielder Ryan Wintle said his teammates are all delighted for Bagan’s rich run of form as he is “one of the nicest lads in the club.”

Eiran Cashin produces a man-of-the-match display.

Derby County scored late to beat relegation rivals Peterborough 1-0 at Pride Park, with Eiran Cashin winning man-of-the-match.

The 19-year-old did not show any signs of inexperience as he played the full 90 minutes for The Rams at centre-back.

Derby manager Wayne Rooney was very impressed with the Ireland underage international. “I thought he was magnificent. Tackling, heading, calmness on the ball, moving the ball forward, and stepping in with the ball; it was everything I wanted and Iโ€™m delighted for him.”

The defender exceeded the Man United legend’s expectations upon reflection. “He has probably done better than I thought he would, if I am being honest.”

Jake Doyle-Hayes bags a brace.

The Cavan man starred for Hibs in a 2-0 win over Ross County at Easter Road on Saturday. Both of Doyle-Hayes’ goals came in the second half after a quiet opening 45 minutes.

The 23-year-old from Ballyjamesduff scored a spectacular effort from distance to make it 2-0 to The Hibees. The win puts the Edinborough outfit up to 4th on goal difference.

The former St. Mirren midfielder will be looking to push on under his new manager Sean Maloney after making the move in the summer. By achieving a finish in the European places, Doyle-Hayes will be hoping to be in the thinking of the Ireland manager, considering he is playing consistently week-in-week-out

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