Cork's Conor McCarthy helps St Mirren beat Celtic while Hourihane and Drinan hit the net

Brian Barry-Murphy's Rochdale win and Adam Idah returns on a good day for the Cork soccer crew cross channel
Cork's Conor McCarthy helps St Mirren beat Celtic while Hourihane and Drinan hit the net

St Mirren's Conor McCarthy and Livingston's Gavin Reilly last weekend. McCarthy's side bounced back from that defeat to take down Celtic at Parkhead. Picture: Jane Barlow/PA Wire.

IT was a productive weekend for Cork soccer players in action across the channel.

Blarney native and ex-Cork City defender Conor McCarthy helped St Mirren to a 2-1 victory away to Celtic.

Neil Lennon's side are enduring a horrific season, with high-profile loan signing and Irish international Shane Duffy at fault for the goal that saw them slump to defeat at Parkhead. Bidding for a record-breaking 10 successive Scottish Premiership crown, Steven Gerrard's Rangers are instead romping towards the title.

Beating the Bhoys was a pick-me-up for St Mirren, beaten in last weekend's League Cup semi-final against a Livingston side that had former Cobh Ramblers attacker Jaze Kabia on the bench. McCarthy had scored when St Mirren knocked out Rangers in the previous round.

McCarthy has made serious strides lining out for the Paisley-based club on the outskirts of Glasgow. 

Turning 23 in April, the nephew of Cork hurling legend Tomás Mulcahy has shown he's capable of operating at a higher level again.

In the Championship, Bandon's Conor Hourihane hit the net again for Swansea.

On loan from Aston Villa, the classy midfielder followed up his midweek goal in the 1-1 draw with Brentford by hitting the net in a 3-1 away victory over Rotherham United.

Swansea City's Conor Hourihane celebrates with his team-mates after scoring. Picture: Nick Potts/PA Wire.
Swansea City's Conor Hourihane celebrates with his team-mates after scoring. Picture: Nick Potts/PA Wire.

Swansea, who hammered Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup on Hourihane's debut, are now second in the table, four behind Championship leaders Norwich.

Set to turn 30 on Tuesday, he is highly rated by Aston Villa but was struggling for game-time in recent months before they approved his temporary switch to Swansea.

Hourihane excelled in the lower leagues for Plymouth Argyle and Barnsley and that experience is sure to be telling in Swansea's promotion bid.

Cork striker Adam Idah came off the bench for Norwich in their stalemate at home to Middlesbrough. 

The College Corinthians graduate had been marked absent for the past 11 weeks with a knee injury he picked up earning his fifth senior cap for Ireland against Wales.

In League One, Carrigaline's Aaron Drinan was the goalscorer in a 1-1 draw for Ipswich Town at Crewe Alexandria.

It was a first Ipswich goal for Drinan, signed from Waterford having also played underage with Cork City.

Former Waterford forward Aaron Drinan in 2019. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Former Waterford forward Aaron Drinan in 2019. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

Ipswich are 11th but four points back on Sunderland in the play-off places.

Drinan has shaken off injuries to earn a starting spot in the Ipswich line-up, having made his debut in the season opener before spending a spell on the sidelines.

Further down the League One table, Brian Barry-Murphy's Rochdale Town secured a vital 2-1 win away to Bristol Rovers. They've played entertaining stuff all season but are in 18th position.

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