Mulhern fires brace to boost Euro hopes
Ireland 3 Latvia 0
Ireland boosted their hopes of qualification for the European Under-19 Championship Elite phase with a commanding performance against Latvia at Eamonn Deacy Park.
Paul Doolin's side ran out 3-0 winners, outclassing their Latvian opponents whilst also improving their goal difference after a surprising loss against Slovenia at Eamonn Deacy Park on Friday night.
Leeds United striker Frankie Mulhern grabbed a brace for Ireland and he was a constant thorn in the side of the Latvians throughout the game. Graham Kelly delivered an enticing cross from the left-wing which caused panic in the Latvian six-yard box, the ball was spilled by Latvian goalkeeper Kristaps Zommers and Mulhern pounced to apply the finishing touch.
Jason McClelland almost doubled Ireland's lead after he cut in from the right flank, he fired hard and low at the bottom corner but Latvian captain Kristaps Zommers got a strong hand to the ball.
On the stroke of half-time, Mulhern saw his glancing header fly narrowly wide after Graham Kelly set him up.
Ireland continued to probe in search of a second goal and it arrived 10 minutes into the second half. Dylan Watts fed Kelly the ball and he made no mistake from close range.
Mulhern made sure of the points in the 64th minute when he raced through on goal and found the bottom corner with a composed finish.
Ireland now face Scotland at the Markets Field on Wednesday evening knowing that a draw will ensure progression from the group stage.
Ireland - Talbot; McCourt, Sweeney, Poynton, Elworthy; Watts, Mulhern (O'Connor 70), Ronan, Deasy; Kelly, McClelland.
Lambert takes over at Blackburn Rovers
Paul Lambert is back in football after replacing Gary Bowyer as manager of Blackburn. The 46-year-old had been out of work since he was sacked by Aston Villa in February.
"I hope to deliver a brand of football that will both entertain the supporters and bring success," he said.