Irish in Britain:
Even if Barry Prenderville returns to Coventry City, at the end of his threemonth loan to Hibernian, they won't forget the Dubliner in a hurry at Easter Road. Ten minutes into Saturday's game against Greenock Morton the former Irish under-21 international provided one of those moments that books a player a place in the annals of a club's history.
The full-back, who turned 22 last Friday, collected the ball just inside his own half, advanced menacingly towards goal and unleashed a 30-yard missile that flew past Morton goalkeeper Ally Maxwell and left his jaw close to ground level. The 10,000 Hibs' fans in attendance were just a bit impressed too and may now be reluctant to see Prenderville return to Coventry in December. Hibs went on to win the game 2-1 and remain top of the first division. Meanwhile at McDiarmid Park, scene of the Irish under-16's famous UEFA final victory over Italy last May, another Irish defender, former international Alan Kernaghan, pulled off a fine Robbie Keane impression in the 53rd minute of St Johnstone's 5-0 win over Motherwell, curling the ball in to the net from the edge of the box.
Irish defenders were at it too in England. Middlesbrough's Curtis Fleming scored a 90th-minute winner against Blackburn on Saturday, only his third goal for the club in almost 200 appearances, and Limerick-born Paul Dillon opened the scoring for Rotherham in their 3-1 win over Darlington. In the first division, Irish under-21 midfielder Alan Mahon matched Prenderville's feat, scoring from 30 yards when he came on as sub for Tranmere in their 3-2 win over Watford, while Portsmouth's Alan McLoughlin scored his seventh goal of the season, converting a penalty that gave his side a 1-0 win against Wolves (who were without the injured Robbie Keane).
Elsewhere Stephen McPhail made his first start of the season for Leeds, away to Nottingham Forest, while Derry-born Mark McKeever, a Republic of Ireland under-21 international, made it to the bench for Sheffield Wednesday yesterday. Former Irish under-21 Andy Turner may be on his way from Portsmouth (where he has yet to make an appearance this season) to Crystal Palace, after Terry Venables made a bid for him last week, but Oldham's Matthew Rush (27), who also won under-21 caps, has been forced to retire with a knee injury.