Sport Hurling

Thursday 22 February 2018

John Mullane

Robbie Keane grabbed the headlines with his hat-trick against the Faroe Islands, on his record-breaking 126th international appearance for the Republic of Ireland.

Robbie has received plenty of criticism throughout his career, but you can't take away from his goalscoring record. A total of 59 goals in 126 appearances is an impressive strike-rate and the goal that stands out for me was that strike against Germany in the 2002 World Cup.

He's playing a deeper role now, and it's time to cut the guy some slack. The lazy criticism is that he scores goals against weak opposition, but he's also netted against big sides.

To score three goals on such a historic night was a remarkable achievement, but for me, the man of the moment is John Joe Nevin, after his gold medal at the European boxing champ-ionships. I had the privilege of meeting the guy at a charity event over Christmas in Waterford. I had my picture taken with John Joe and his Olympic silver medal. I don't think he's received the recognition he deserves for his exploits in London.

It's a bit like Wayne McCullough in 1992, when he was almost forgotten when Michael Carruth claimed gold.

Irish Independent

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