There was disappointment for Seamus Coleman when he learned over the weekend he was not the winner of the Professional Footballers’ Association Young Player of the Year.
Coleman returned to the Everton squad for Saturday’s 2-0 win over Blackburn Rovers at Goodison Park, coming off the bench on 65 minutes after an ankle kock ruled him out of the previous weekend’s 3-0 win at Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Leon Osman opened the scoring on 54 minutes and Leighton Baines then doubled Everton’s lead from the penalty spot after Coleman was upended by Phil Jones.
Arsenal midﬁelders Jack Wilshere won the PFA award, while Tottenham Hotspur’s Gareth Bale was the winner of the senior award. Coleman, a former St Catherine’s and Sligo Rovers player, was nominated for the award, alongside Manchester United winger Nani, Bale, Arsenal midﬁelders Samir Nasri and Wilshere and Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart.
Given and Delap
Football followers in the north-west will have a strong interest in next month’s FA Cup final at Wembley after Manchester City and Stoke City came through the weekend semi-finals.
Lifford’s Shay Given was not part of the City squad in their 1-0 derby win over Manchester United on Saturday evening, although the goalkeeper, who has been said to be interesting Liverpool, should be available for selection in the next fortnight or so having been sidelined with a shoulder injury.
Given has this season lost his place in the City goal to England international Joe Hart, but could be in line to win his first major honour. Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish is a known admirer of Given, having already signed him twice in recent years – for Blackburn Rovers in 1994, and in 1997 to Newcastle United.
On the other side of the fence will be Rory Delap, whose father John is from Letterkenny. Delap and his Stoke teammates hammered Bolton Wanderers by five goals to nil on Sunday at Wembley to reach the FA Cup final for the first time in their history. They will face City on May 14.
Finn Harps in Athlone
Finn Harps aim to get a first win of the season when they travel to Lisseywollen to take on Athlone Town tonight.
The Ballybofey club, who were hammered by five goals to nil against Cork City at Turner’s Cross on Friday night, are enduring a troublesome start to the campaign with only three points from a possible 15 to date.
Goalkeeper Ciaran Gallagher took a knock against Cork and is a doubt, which might open up the door for Christopher Patton or Lee McFadden to make a first-team debut. Also, Ciaran Coll, who left Cork on cructches after he was stretchered off, suffered only heavy bruising.
Marc Brolly is suspended having been sent off against Salthill Devon. Last month’s scheduled game in the midlands was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.