Irish Abroad: Stephen Ireland inspires Stoke City win

The midfielder helped the Potters stun Chelsea, coming off the bench to provide a goal and assist, while John O'Shea had a weekend to forget for Sunderland
By Ronan Murphy


Stephen Ireland came off the bench to help Stoke City to a 3-2 win over Chelsea, chipping in with a goal and an assist. The midfielder replaced Charie Adam after just 18 minutes, and scored Stoke's second with a curled shot after good work from Jonathan Walters.

John O'Shea was the villain for Sunderland as he put the ball into his own net in the second-half to give Tottenham Hotspur a 2-1 victory. The Black Cats captain saw Moussa Dembele's cross deflect off him and past Vito Mannone with the scores level to give Spurs all three points.

Richard Keogh headed in Derby County's final goal in their 5-1 demolition of Blackpool, while Jeff Hendrick came on with nine minutes to go as he continues in his endeavour to return to full fitness following three months on the sidelines with an ankle injury.

Simon Cox's run of form continued as he bagged the only goal in Nottingham Forest's 1-0 win over Sheffield Wednesday. The striker scored from close range early in the second-half to take his tally to four goals in his last five games.

Ipswich Town came from behind to defeat Huddersfield Town 2-1, with Daryl Murphy heading in just a minute from the end to give Mick McCarthy's side all three points.

Joe Mason scored his first goal since joining Bolton Wanderers on loan last month, helping them to a 3-0 win over Doncaster Rovers. The Republic of Ireland Under-21 had featured off the bench twice since moving from Cardiff City, but marked his first start with a goal.


The weekend's only League One tie saw Notts County beat Gillingham 3-1 to record only their fourth win of the season. On-loan Aston Villa winger Jack Grealish scored his first senior goal three minutes from time, taking the ball past three defenders before striking from the edge of the area.


James Berrett opened the scoring as Carlisle United defeated Brentford 3-2 to book their place in the Third Round of the FA Cup. Berrett's second goal of the season sets up a glamour tie with Sunderland, which will see the Cumbrians travel to the Stadium of Light.

Rotherham United lost 2-1 to Rochdale to slump out of the cup against lower league opponents. Lee Frecklington opened the scoring early on, but the League Two side scored two second-half goals to progress.


Celtic extended their lead at the top of the Scottish Premiership table to seven points with a 5-0 away win at Motherwell. Anthony Stokes' effort was turned in by Kris Commons for the opener, while the Ireland international got his name on the scoresheet in the second-half with a well-taken finish.

James Collins rewarded new manager Terry Butcher's decision to start him up front with a late equaliser in Hibernian's 1-1 draw with Partick Thistle. Collins had troubled goalkeeper Scott Fox on a number of occasions as Hibs fought their way back into the game before slotting home in stoppage time.

APOEL moved to within four points of the top spot in Cyprus with a 2-0 win over Ethnikos Achna. Cillian Sheridan came off the bench three minutes from time for the Nicosia side to score his first goal of the season.

Liam Miller played his first game since October, with a 40 minute cameo in Brisbane Roar's 2-1 win over Adelaide United. Roar are currently five points clear at the top of the Australian A-League, and will be happy to see the veteran midfielder return to the squad.

Joe Murphy (Coventry City)

Defenders: Seamus Coleman (Everton), Richard Keogh (Derby County), Richard Dunne (Queens Park Rangers)

Midfielders: Stephen Ireland (Stoke City), Lee Frecklington (Rotherham United), James Berrett (Carlisle United), Jack Grealish (Notts County)

Forwards: Joe Mason (Bolton Wanderers), Daryl Murphy (Ipswich Town), James Collins (Hibernian)