CHAMPIONSHIP side Coventry City now have an astonishing total of 10 Irish players in their first-team squad following their capture of keeper Colin Doyle on loan from Birmingham City, writes Aidan Fitzmaurice.
But the Cork native had a tough start on his Sky Blues debut last night as City were beaten 2-0 by League Two side Morecambe in the Carling Cup.
Doyle had been frustrated with the lack of first-team opportunities at St Andrews, and he failed to play at all last season as he was relegated to third-choice keeper. Last month he spent time on trial at Plymouth Argyle with a view to a move there.
Now, in the last year of his contract with Birmingham, Doyle has opted to join Aidy Boothroyd's men on a month's loan. Doyle last night filled in for Sky Blues first-choice keeper Keiren Westwood, who was on international duty with Ireland in Dublin.
Irish players Westwood, Richard Keogh, David Bell, Michael Doyle and Lee Carsley all played for Coventry in their 2-0 league win over Portsmouth on Saturday, while Roy O'Donovan was on the bench. Gary Deegan and Stephen O'Halloran are currently out injured.
Win is the ticket for birthday boy Keane
Two goals from David Norris ensured Ipswich boss Roy Keane enjoyed his 39th birthday, but the Tractor Boys needed extra-time to see off a brave Exeter side in the Carling Cup.
Exeter's Ryan Harley broke the deadlock after 54 minutes with a fine shot that flew across goal and went in off the far post. It took Ipswich 10 minutes before they were level, when a cross from the right was headed in by substitute Ronan Murray.
The Tractor Boys grabbed their second goal when Norris lashed a low shot inside Paul Jones' near post. However, Harley levelled things up with an unstoppable shot from 25 yards.
The Tractor Boys won it nine minutes into extra-time when Norris followed up to score after Jon Stead's shot had been saved by Jones.