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McClean: Treat Gib like Germany

first_img “The game will be difficult enough for us, and that’s the time that we want to be preparing properly for. “The German game, obviously, causes its own concerns – that comes afterwards. It’s a tough game for us, obviously, and one that I really cannot really concern myself about until we have played Gibraltar.” O’Neill reported no injury concerns after working with his players, including newly-arrived Hull full-back Brian Lenihan, at a rain-soaked Gannon Park on Wednesday morning. He did so with excerpts from assistant Roy Keane’s updated autobiography still causing a stir outside, if not inside, the camp. O’Neill said with a smile: “I have things to do this week, like Gibraltar. I am not concerned about anybody’s book at this moment, particularly my assistant manager.” McClean, a boyhood Manchester United fan who is relishing the opportunity to work under the Old Trafford old boy, too insisted the furore surrounding his book was proving no distraction. He said: “I don’t see why. Roy writes a book – it’s not going to affect what we do on the pitch. That’s his business. We are here to focus on two games and get the best two results possible.” The Wigan midfielder was sporting a beard as he spoke to reporters, but insisted he was not engaged in a competition with Keane, whose facial hair has become a talking point in recent weeks. He said: “Roy’s beard – that’s some beard. I don’t think I can grow that one, I haven’t got the thickness.” James McClean has warned his Republic of Ireland team-mates not to allow themselves to be written into football folklore for the wrong reasons. However, McClean is refusing to be taken in by the Poles’ landslide victory with Martin O’Neill’s men looking to provide themselves with a platform for what is certain to be a far more taxing trip to Germany next Tuesday. He said: “Obviously, Gibraltar are new to world football and then there’s the Poland result in the last game. “But for us, we have got to treat it like the Germany game. I know that’s the old cliche, but there have been a lot of upsets in football over the years and we have got to make sure we are not one come Saturday. “If we can get an early goal, great, it takes the pressure off. But if it takes until the 80th minute… We have just got to make sure we get three points. At the end of the day, that’s the most important thing.” O’Neill is equally keen to keep feet firmly on the ground ahead of a game which he insists could prove more difficult in reality than it looks on paper. He had his players watch sections of the Gibraltar v Poland match on Tuesday and will draw up his plan armed with an impromptu briefing from the Polish camp after bumping into them at a FIFA conference in Russia. O’Neill said: “I was speaking to the Polish representatives, who were right beside us, and they were saying how difficult the game against Gibraltar was, breaking them down, scoring the goal in the first half – they were obviously relieved about that. “I watched the game and I see the problems that they had, particularly in the first half. I think Gibraltar probably conceded about four goals in the last 10 or 12, 14 minutes of the game. The Republic resume their Euro 2016 qualifying campaign against Gibraltar on Saturday looking to pile on the misery following the newcomers’ opening day 7-0 home defeat to Poland last month. That proved the rudest of awakenings for the Group D minnows as they were left in little doubt, if they needed it, of what lies ahead as they prepare for showdowns with Ireland, Georgia, Scotland and World champions Germany. Press Associationlast_img read more

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Emma Lamison emerging as late-season point producer for Syracuse field hockey

first_imgEmma Lamison lifted the ball into the air and continued to juggle it with her stick above the turf. A Duke defender tripped Lamison, leading to a SU penalty corner. Following her insertion, Lamison hugged the back post and tapped in a rebound goal.Emma Lamison is improving her play at the right time for No. 2 Syracuse (12-1, 4-1 Atlantic Coast). In her last three games, the senior forward recorded 10 points on three goals and four assists, doubling her point total on the season. She was named the ACC offensive player of the week for her performances in the team’s last two games.Lamison led Northeastern in scoring her sophomore year with 26 points before transferring to Syracuse. But a year ago, she finished the season with 22 points and 37 shots. Only 13 games into this season, she has tallied 20 points and 33 shots. Her four assists this weekend matched her 2015 total.“Last year, I obviously dribbled a lot and tried to get the perfect shot,” Lamison said. “This year I really focused on trying to just hit it at the top of the circle.”But it is not just the statistics that show how Lamison is stepping up her game in her second season at Syracuse.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textAfter not starting the season as the team’s inserter on penalty corners, Lamison earned her way to the top spot. She was more consistent with her hit speed and accuracy than the other two players battling for the position — Nijsje Venrooy and Jennifer Bleakney — head coach Ange Bradley said.Lamison has played a key role in a SU corner attack that has scored six goals on penalty corners in the last two games.“She’s always down the other end working on it,” Bradley said. “She’s been patient through the process and growing at a skill she needed to get better at.”For many players, it is either their breakaway speed or dominating size that defines their style of play. For Lamison, it’s her crafty stick handling.Against then-No. 2 Duke on Friday, Lamison showed special technical skills as she evaded Duke defenders on several occasions. Cornered by three defenders, Lamison spun around, split the defenders with a swift move from right to left and continued down the field with the ball.Lamison also keeps good positioning in the front line. She notched two rebound goals against Duke.“We all just have our specific position areas we gotta be in,” Lamison said. “You just hope the ball comes to you and you get it in when you get the chance.”Lamison has three two-goal games on the year. One of them came against then-No. 11 Wake Forest on Sept. 18. Just two minutes into the game, she scooped up a bouncing ball in front of the net, possessed it, then carefully placed it in the back left corner of the net. Later on, Lamison raced to a loose ball and finished with a reverse goal to give Syracuse an early two-goal advantage.Lamison started the season slow. She struggled to tally points. She was stuck in the back line on penalty corners.But now she is the lead inserter for a powerful Syracuse penalty corner attack. She leads the team in points over the last three games and is emerging as a top offensive threat for the Orange as the regular season winds down. Comments Published on October 11, 2016 at 10:01 pm Contact Josh: jlschafe@syr.edu | @Schafer_44 Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more