Portugal 6-1 Switzerland: Ramos’ hat-trick justifies Santos’ selection in statement thrashing

Goncalo Ramos of Portugal celebrate the 5-1 during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 round of 16 match between Portugal and Switzerland at Lusail Stadium...

The pre-match noise surrounded Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo’s benching by Fernando Santos. Within 20 minutes, the man who replaced him – Benfica’s Goncalo Ramos – scored a thunderous opener and later completed the tournament’s first hat-trick as they thrashed Switzerland without their historical talisman. Up next? Spain’s slayers Morocco on Saturday.
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France 3-1 Poland: Giroud breaks all-time record, Mbappe’s second-half brace puts Poles to the sword

France's forward Kylian Mbappe celebrates scoring his team's second goal with France's forward Olivier Giroud during the Qatar 2022 World Cup round...

Olivier Giroud surpassed Thierry Henry to top the all-time goalscoring charts for France, scoring against a former teammate in goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny no less, before Kylian Mbappe’s second-half brace ended Poland’s fading hopes of a late comeback. Barcelona forward Robert Lewandowski scored a retaken penalty late, on what could be his last World Cup appearance. Continue reading

World Cup 2022: Croatia draw sees Belgium crash out and Martinez depart, they must now rebuild

Croatia's players and teammembers celebrate at the end of the Qatar 2022 World Cup Group F football match between Croatia and Belgium at the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Al-Rayyan, west of Doha on December 1, 2022. (Photo by Chandan KHANNA / AFP) (Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images)

As good as Croatia were for sustained periods, Belgium had ample opportunity to punish Zlatko Dalic’s side. Instead, they again rued missed goalscoring chances and a startling lack of urgency at times, with their goalless draw on MD3 meaning the golden generation have failed to qualify from the World Cup group stages. Roberto Martinez’s contract expired at the tournament’s end and well, the inquest into their latest underachievement must be thorough. Continue reading

World Cup 2022 – England 0-0 USA: Berhalter’s boys expose Three Lions in anti-climactic stalemate

AL KHOR, QATAR - NOVEMBER 25: Mason Mount of England and Tyler Adams of USA and Jude Bellingham of England during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group B match between England and USA at Al Bayt Stadium on November 25, 2022 in Al Rayyan, Qatar. (Photo by Richard Sellers/Getty Images)

Gareth Southgate insisted afterwards that he’s not unhappy and expected a tight game given the strength of their American opponents. His players were frustrated post-match, but can only blame themselves for a ponderous and unsettling display as they – like the Netherlands three hours earlier – failed to secure the World Cup’s first last-16 berth with a group game to spare.
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France 4-1 Australia: World champions rally from early scare to earn big win in World Cup opener

Adrien RABIOT and Olivier GIROUD of France during the FIFA World Cup 2022, Group D match between France and Australia on November 22, 2022 in Al...]

Four of the last five World Cup winners have gone on to crash out in the group stages at the subsequent tournament, a statistic beginning with France themselves back in 2002. For a 20-minute spell in their Group D opener against Australia, you could be forgiven for thinking history would repeat itself. Now though, they’ll be expecting to build on a display highlighting some strengths while lluminating weaknesses with tougher challenges in the days to come.
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Drogheda United 2-0 Finn Harps: Markey, Rooney on target as Drogs end disappointing season on a high

Louth , Ireland - 1 August 2022; Darragh Markey of Drogheda United in action against Michael Gallagher of UCD during the SSE Airtricity League...

Goals from Darragh Markey and Dayle Rooney saw Drogheda United finish the Premier Division campaign victorious with a 2-0 home win over already-relegated Finn Harps tonight. While they were comfortable early on and created chances aplenty during a busy second-half showing, this morale-boosting result doesn’t mask the fact there’s much to improve before 2023. Continue reading

Djurgardens vs. Shamrock Rovers: Hoops keen to finish poor UECL campaign on a high in Sweden

After lifting a third consecutive Premier Division title on Sunday, Shamrock Rovers play for pride in Thursday’s 5.45pm KO from the Tele2 Arena against Group F winners Djurgardens – their final UEFA Europa Conference League fixture. Will they leave Sweden with a morale-boosting victory among European competition, or do the hosts have a surprise in store for tomorrow’s guests? 
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Sligo Rovers vs. St. Patrick’s Athletic: Away victory vital for Saints to keep European hopes alive

Dublin , Ireland - 21 October 2022; Serge Atakayi of St Patrick's Athletic celebrates after scoring his side's first goal during the SSE Airtricity...

It’s fourth vs. fifth in the penultimate Irish Premier Division game of the campaign, as Sligo Rovers host St. Patrick’s Athletic from The Showgrounds in Friday night’s 7.45pm kick-off. Nothing but victory will do for the visitors, attempting to apply pressure on Dundalk in third – who currently occupy the division’s final UEFA Europa Conference League qualification berth. Continue reading

Bohemians 2-2 Finn Harps: McDaid’s contentious 89th-minute equaliser stuns wasteful visitors

Dublin , Ireland - 21 October 2022; Declan McDaid of Bohemians in action against Ethan Boyle of Finn Harps during the SSE Airtricity League Premier...

Declan McDaid’s 89th-minute equaliser saw Bohemians snatch a point vs. relegation-threatened Finn Harps at Dalymount Park in their first match under new boss Declan Devine. The result, coupled with UCD’s 2-1 comeback win over Drogheda on a busy MD34 tonight, has confined Finn Harps to rock bottom of the Premier Division with two league fixtures left to play.
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Preview – Bohemians vs. Finn Harps: Must-win territory for relegation-threatened visitors

Donegal , Ireland - 14 October 2022; Rob Jones of Finn Harps celebrates after scoring his side's first goal during the SSE Airtricity League Premier...

Relegation-threatened Finn Harps look to end their six-match winless run away at Dalymount Park in Friday’s 7.45pm KO against a Bohemians side with nothing left to play for – besides pride and potentially impressing new manager Declan Devine as they look with renewed optimism towards 2023. Can their visitors spring a surprise, or will their poor form continue? Continue reading