Ireland U21 star Andrew Moran enjoys breakthrough night in the EFL Cup

Ireland U21 star Andrew Moran enjoys breakthrough night in the EFL Cup

Andrew Moran – remember the name.

Earlier this month the Ireland under-21s opened their European qualifying campaign with a 3-2 win over Turkey inspired by a goalscoring performance by captain Andrew Moran.

The attacking midfielder had just agreed a loan deal with Championship side Blackburn Rovers from Brighton and hopes were high for the Dubliner at his new club.

After five Championship appearances, the 19-year-old certainly didn’t look out of place in the Rovers team but hadn’t quite lit it up either – that was until last night.

Starting against Cardiff City in the EFL Cup, Moran delivered a memorable breakthrough performance that included two goals and two assists.

Just like the Ireland under-21s win over Turkey, he also won a penalty for his team and was the most inventive player on the park as he created four chances.

Blackburn boss praises magic Moran.

โ€œHe is great player, first of all,” said Blackburn manager Jon Dhal Tomasson. “He scores goals, he can give assists.

“Heโ€™s intelligent, his flair on the ball is extremely good, to carry the ball, heโ€™s good to play one or two touches. He works hard for the team.

โ€œHe is a young boy, young man, who is also very driven. He wants to become better, he is very ambitious. So we are very pleased with Andy.โ€

Irish in the EFL Cup.

Elsewhere in the EFL Cup, Corkman Caoimhin Kelleher finished Liverpool’s game against Leicester City with the captain’s armband.

The Ireland goalkeeper started between the sticks as Jurgen Klopp’s side ran out as 3-1 winners at Anfield.

Nathan Collins meanwhile, started for Brentford against Arsenal but couldn’t stop them from falling to a narrow 1-0 defeat.

Lincoln City were another side with Irish interest as Ireland under-21 left-back Sean Roughan and former Limerick FC centre-back Paudie O’Connor started in their 1-0 loss to Premier League mainstays West Ham United.

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