Player of the week

 

There's no love lost between Peterborough manager Barry Fry and the club's supporters - he did, after all, label them "sponging ponces" a few weeks back - but young Dan Murray has no complaints about football's very own Del Boy.

A fortnight ago Fry offered the 17-year-old defender a five-year professional contract and, on Saturday, gave him his first-team debut away to Macclesfield (another of the club's Irish contingent, Tony Shields from Strabane - a Republic of Ireland under-21 international - was also given a new, five-year deal and a pay rise).

But is Murray 110 per cent Irish? "Well, he'll answer to `Donal O Muiri'," said our Peterborough source, which was good enough for us. The same source tells us that the club's academy director, John Morling, will also answer to "Sean O Morlaing" - "He's an East End Londoner who's fallen in love with all things Irish". True enough, few English clubs have a stronger Irish connection than Peterborough. Dubliner Keith Andrews also made his first-team debut on Saturday, coming on as a late substitute for Wolves in their 2-1 win away to Swindon, while 21-year-old defender Michael Cummins made his debut for Port Vale after joining the club from Middlesbrough last week.

For our player of the week award, though, we're dropping down to the English third division where Irish under-21 forward Barry Conlon has just about secured York City's league survival with two crucial goals in the space of seven days. Last week he scored from 25 yards to give York a point against Carlisle, and on Saturday he got his 10th of the season away to Shrewsbury, this time finding the net from 35 yards - it proved to be the only goal of the game and lifted York 11 points clear of bottom club Chester.