Norwich City’s Republic of Ireland duo Wes Hoolahan and Anthony Pilkington suffer at the hands of Portugal’s Ronaldo in a 5-1 friendly loss

Norwich City midfielder Wes Hoolahan was part of the Republic of Ireland line up hammered 5-1 against Portugal in the final match of their USA friendly tour. Picture: Artur Widak/PA Wire Norwich City midfielder Wes Hoolahan was part of the Republic of Ireland line up hammered 5-1 against Portugal in the final match of their USA friendly tour. Picture: Artur Widak/PA Wire

Wednesday, June 11, 2014
10:01 AM

Norwich City duo Wes Hoolahan and Anthony Pilkington felt the full force of World Cup hopefuls Portugal in the Republic of Ireland’s 5-1 friendly defeat in New Jersey in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

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Hoolahan played 63 minutes before being replaced by Robbie Keane whilst Pilkington was introduced by Martin O’Neill for the final 23 minutes of Ireland’s final match on their summer tour.

Portugal’s superstar Ronaldo proved his fitness after knee and thigh problems since helping Real Madrid to a tenth European Cup success with a 66-minute outing for Paulo Bento’s side.

Hugo Almeida headed Portugal in front from a Silvestre Varela cross after only two minutes, and it was 2-0 when Richard Keogh deflected a Fabio Coentrao cross into his own net.

Ronaldo’s header was then saved by David Forde for Almeida to follow up and score before James McClean pulled one back with his first senior goal for the Republic seven minutes before the break after profiting from Hoolahan’s quickly-taken free kick to cut inside and clip a left foot shot past Rui Patricio. But Manchester United winger Nani came off the bench to set up further goals in the second half for Vieirinha and Coentrao as the Irish finished their summer programme on a low note.

“It was as tough a game as we expected it to be,” said O’Neill. “But it was also a game that I wanted us to participate in because this it is what it is about - playing one of the best teams in the world heading to the World Cup.

“I felt we were a touch nervous at the start and those are the things that over the course of the European Championships you have to try and cut out. I feel it is not disheartening in the sense that it was 3-1 and if we shut up shop, it is 3-1 and it doesn’t seem so bad. I am not too bothered. I have done this before at club level, trying to chase games and stay as positive as possible.”

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16 comments

  • Thanks for the post about World Cup. Just a tip about those who don't live in countries that stream world cup online. You can use UnoTelly to remove the geoblock and stream World Cup 2014 in your country free worldcup.unotelly.com

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    brendylouis2014

    Saturday, June 14, 2014

  • Hardly cuddly Dave123. Just pointing out the facts. Suppose its just a coincidence so many players seemed disillusioned and fail to perform under Hughton. Heck lets get the pitch forks and torches out and burn the whole squad at the stake. If they go they go and maybe for the best but so many NCFC fans have this simple attitude when in reality in 3 months time you may all be praising those very players up and likely targeting a different 3 as scapegoats. Things change very quickly in football especially with fickle fans. Dont burn all your bridges. :) OTBC

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    Mattias333

    Thursday, June 12, 2014

  • Interesting that Steady On and Barking Wise have both disappeared. One and the same? Any thoughts?

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    Mad Brewer

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • dave how can you say they have 1 good game then 2 bad. Pilks has 1 game then gets injured for the next 6

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    Jimhow

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • Nice cuddly comments Mattias perhaps we all should all go and see these boys and put our arms around them! Shame neither of em turned up last season when the chips were down so i am happy for them to be shown the door.We cannot afford players in the championship who have one good game and two bad ones,that's what you get from these lads!

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    dave123

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • :) I wouldnt blame him or any player wanting to leave while under Hughtons management. Heck I wanted to transfer but sadly im contracted to NCFC via love and not a multi million pound contract so transfering is impossible ;)

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    Mattias333

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • Agree totally Mattias with your views on Wes. I think it will depend on whether his heart is still in it at Norwich, or whether he just wants to get out. If Adams and co believe he can add value to whatever system they employ then hopefully they will convince him to stay on

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    canary can-can

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • Thats always the negative with Wes. Always has been. He constantly wants the ball. Maybe not a negative someone actually wanting the ball but what happens as a result. With Wes, if you are prepared to play a luxury player you also have to accept he will give the ball away. Trying to pick the lock isn't always easy and quite often it will take 2 or 3 different approaches. If we are going to give the ball away I have no problem it being through Wes actually trying to create something, rather than it being by Bradley Johnson giving it away while under utterly no pressure. In the right game Wes can still be a good player to have in our squad and personally I feel we'd be silly to let him go no1: cheap & no2: to one of our rivals in the championship.

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    Mattias333

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • Many times I have seen Hooly at City he has taken a free kick quickly but unfortunantely the players around him have not been on the same wave length resulting in no advantage in the free kick. Perhaps he could alert the rest of the team to be awake when a free kick is given.

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    goldie

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • You're not alone pal! Im still convinced if his head is right and Adams wants to play a style that allows him to flourish, Wes has a role to play next season. Maybe not every game and certainly not in the Premier League but he can still do something nobody else at NCFC can and thats create a clear goal scoring chance out of nothing. I fully understand Wes wanting to leave under hughton (like Holt and many others) and dont believe half the stuff the papers have printed. The stories they've released and how they're worded each one has caused the worst game of chinese whispers i've ever seen. If he leaves and we recieve good money for him then fair enough but can only see a fellow championship rival signing him an surely that will only come back to haunt us.

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    Mattias333

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • Thanks to Mattias333 for providing a considered insight as to how these players have performed for their country in recent games - something I should have got from the original story I feel based on that headline.

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    LR Series 2A

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • Wes set up Irelands goal, that's what he's good at, but wait if he doesn't play, how can he? Wes is a super player and I am sure if he leaves this summer he will go on to prove how good he is. I hope that Wes stays and he is picked to play for Norwich on a consistent basis.

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    RoadWarrior

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • I admit I didnt watch the game in question but ive watched (or atleast watched the highlights) of their other games. Im neither in the Pro Hoolahan camp or the mindless hate mob camp but in the games ive watched over the last few weeks its reminded me a little of norwich. Hes played in the hole but Ireland have lacked the quality to get him in the ball in areas where he can do damage. When they have hes created decent chances. He certainly in one of the worst Irish sides ive seen either way. I know its the summer so many players are missing but still look poor. Wasnt expecting Pilks or Wes to pull up any trees when I saw the squad. Pilks hasnt done a whole lot in the games I watched but should be given credit for avoiding injury. One more game and it will be a personal best for him for avoiding injury.

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    Mattias333

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • Good points made by waclor - I read this expecting to see some detail about how the NCFC players performed against some of the best in the world and..... found out how long they were on the pitch for. Disappointing.

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    LR Series 2A

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • Archant have really gone beyond the call of duty in the length and detail of the performances of Wes and Pilks. Now we know....................very littlke more than we knew before really. Far be it for me to tell you your job but couldn't you have got more detail from an Irish football website to enlighten us?

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    waclor

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

  • Yet they play in the quite decent performances against the likes of Italy and it barely gets reported. The more simple minded NCFC fans dont exactly need help forming a bad opinion of Hoolahan and Pilks but the media feels the need to try help that negative feeling. What happens if they are still here come August? All this hate (which is well over the top) isn't good.

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    Mattias333

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

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