The Morning Sports Briefing

Martin O’Neill hopeful of O’Shea fitness, Towell the hero again for Dundalk, Legion and South Kerry to go again, greyhound racing and dog cruelty, Moyes to leave Sociedad and what to watch out for

Dundalk’s Richie Towell celebrates with the FAI Cup. Photo: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Dundalk’s Richie Towell celebrates with the FAI Cup. Photo: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

 

Soccer

John O’Shea may still play for Ireland in Monday’s Euro 2016 play-off second leg with Bosnia and Herzegovina, despite Sunderland Sam Allardyce saying he will not recover in time.

The Ireland squad assemble today ahead of their journey to Zenica on Thursday and Martin O’Neill will be hoping O’Shea can recover from his hamstring injury before Monday.

Rob Elliot is another player in doubt after his man of the match performance for Newcastle on Sunday with Steve McClaren reluctant to let him travel.

Domestically Dundalk continue to celebrate this morning after Richie Towell’s extra-time strike saw them claim the double yesterday after a 1-0 win over Cork City at Lansdowne Road.

Meanwhile, the women’s final was decided by a dramatic penalty shootout as Wexford Youths defeated Shelbourne.

In Spain David Moyes is expected to leave Real Sociedad in the next 24 hours with the club set to make an announcement today. The news comes after Moyes’ side lost 2-0 to second bottom Las Palmas over the weekend.

In his column today Ken Early is also taking a look at matters in Spain, specifically the Cristiano Ronaldo documentary set to be released today.

According to a new biography of Ronaldo by Guillem Balague, the movie is the latest front in a propaganda offensive devised by Ronaldo’s agent, Jorge Mendes.

Rugby

In Pro12 action Ulster battled hard to claim a seven point victory over Newport Gwent Dragons yesterday. Dragons captain Rynard Landman went over in the final seconds but Ulster were spared as he was deemed to have been held-up.

There was more success for an Irish side in Scotland as Munster held off Edinburgh for a narrow two point win which saw them move to second place, a solitary point behind leaders Connacht.

GAA

A late point from Killarney Legion’s Jamie O’Sullivan saw his side force a replay with South Kerry in the Kerry senior football final yesterday afternoon. The game ended in controversy as O’Sullivan’s point came after the allotted two minutes of added time. The two sides will now meet again the weekend after next.

In Galway it was a similar story as Sarsfields and Craughwell both hit 12 points to see the county final go to a replay.

Meanwhile Ballygunner mounted a second-half recovery to beat Glen Rovers and reach their first AIB Munster club hurling final in six years.

In the Leinster championship Cuala cruised by Coolderry to reach the quarter-finals, where they will face Kilkenny champions Clara.

Golf

In Shanghai Scotland’s Russell Knox claimed his first professional win with a two shot win at the WGC HSBC Champions event.

The Scot wasn’t even in the field at the beginning of the week but got the call after a number of withdrawals.

Rory McIlroy finished tied-11th and will now face a nervous weekend as Danny Willett looks to overtake the world number three at the top of the Race to Dubai standings at this week’s BMW Masters.

Greyhound Racing

In his column this week Brian O’Connor looks at the changes needed in greyhound racing to address dog cruelty.

“It came on the back of a TV programme that showed greyhounds being live-baited: the practice of giving them live animals to savage to encourage them to run faster after the mechanical bunny.

“The footage is both disgusting and unsurprising.”

What to watch out for

Soccer: FC United of Manchester are in FA Cup first round action as they look to cap off a weekend of upsets when they take on Chesterfield. BT Sport 2 from 7pm.

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