Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has admitted summer signing Mario Balotelli will never match Luis Suarez’s Anfield impact.  Photograph: Peter Byrne/PA Wire.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has admitted summer signing Mario Balotelli will never match Luis Suarez’s Anfield impact.Rodgers backed the Italy (...)

Liverpool’s Raheem Sterling  celebrates with captain Steven Gerrard after his cross was deflected into the goal by Queens Park Rangers defender Steven Caulker for the winner at   at Loftus Road. Photograph: Eddie Keogh / Reuters

Brendan Rodgers hailed Raheem Sterling’s “courage and cleverness” in providing the perfect riposte to “unfortunate” criticism of his England omission (...)

Richard Dunne of QPR scores an own goal past Alex McCarthy during the Barclays Premier League match against Liverpool at Loftus Road. Photograph:  Paul Gilham/Getty Images

QPR 2 Liverpool 3According to the Queens Park Rangers support, Raheem Sterling sleeps when he wants. Not here. Not when he had the presence of mind to(...)

Martin O’Neill during the game in Gelsenkirchen: “The exhilaration is something for us to carry that into that [Scotland] game.” Photograph: Lars Baron/Bongarts/Getty Images

Martin O’Neill says that he will weigh up during the next week or two how to approach Ireland’s next European Championship qualifying game next month (...)

 Irelad captain Roy Keane in action against Portugal at Lansdowne Road. ,  Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill.The Irish times.

Time to draw on a selection of excellent Ireland performances from the archives.June 2001Republic of Ireland 1 Portugal 1Most Irish soccer fans will r(...)

The Republic of Ireland’s John O’Shea celebrates scoring the dramatic equaliser against Germany  in injury time. Photo: Donall Farmer/Inpho

John O’Shea, the centurion, the captain, the hero. About time he gets his dues.Over the years there has been a certain negativity directed at John bec(...)

John O’Shea hasn’t scored many goals but he’s scored some big ones. He scored in a Champions League semi-final, he chipped Manuel Almunia at Highbu(...)

Republic of Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane during yesterday’s press briefing at Gannon Park in Malahide. “It’s going to be tough, obviously, but my goodness we’ve got to look forward to the game.” Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

The standard accusation on these occasions is that the press generate unrealistic expectations for the team but Roy Keane, famously, doesn’t go with t(...)

Tottenham Hotspur’s Nacer Chadli scores his second and his side’s third against QPR at White Hart Lane. Photograph: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Tottenham 4 QPR 0Harry Redknapp offered a puff of the cheeks and a quick handshake to those in the opposing dug-out at the final whistle to suggest he(...)

Richard Dunne: In the beginning, he must have looked an outside bet to become what he eventually did: a crowd favourite, brave to a fault and a player who carried the best of the qualities of the old era with him into the new. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA

It is one of the great football images: Richard Dunne and Thierry Henry sitting together on the grass in Paris minutes after France and Ireland finish(...)