Graham Burke capped his first senior start for Ireland by netting the national team’s first goal of 2018.
The Shamrock Rovers man made a cameo appearance for the Boys in Green in Monday’s defeat to France in Paris, for which he was rewarded with a run-out from the beginning in tonight’s friendly against USA.
With the visitors 1-0 ahead and the game moving towards the hour-mark, Burke repaid Martin O’Neill’s faith and ensured that it would be a night to remember for the former Aston Villa man.
In truth, though, he will rarely score an easier goal for either club or country. With the ball bouncing around the USA box, Burke reacted quickly to divert a shot from Darragh Lenihan into the net for his first of what he hopes will be many for the Boys in Green.
In doing so, Burke became the first League of Ireland-based player to score for the national side in 40 years.
WATCH:@ShamrockRovers man Graham Burke bags his first International goal to make it 1-1 at the Aviva!
— eir Sport (@eirSport) June 2, 2018
— FAIreland ⚽️?? (@FAIreland) June 2, 2018
First goal for Ireland by a League of Ireland player since Ray Treacy in 1978.
— Neil O’Riordan (@noriordan) June 2, 2018
Burke had no time to push for an Irish winner, however, as he was immediately replaced by Daryl Horgan for the remainder of the match.Lenihan, meanwhile, came even closer to getting his first Ireland goal midway through the second half, only to see his header disallowed for offside