Striker Conor Washington scored both goals in Charlton Athletic’s 2-0 League One win at home to Cambridge United at the weekend to take his tally for the season to seven.
The 29-year-old, who is in a rich vein of form having scored four in his last six outings for the Addicks, earned high praise from caretaker boss Johnnie Jackson after the game.
“Conor’s playing out of this world at the minute,” Jackson told the club's website. “I was really pleased that he got some goals today because I thought his performance in midweek was outstanding.
“Obviously he didn’t get the goals that night, but he’s amongst them today and he really deserves them. He’s tireless with his work and his running and obviously he’s put the finishes together so it’s all come together.”
💚 @WashingtonConor netted twice for @CAFCofficial yesterday with a couple of sharp finishes 👊 #GAWApic.twitter.com/x78s77jJwM— Northern Ireland (@NorthernIreland) December 12, 2021
Also hitting a brace over the weekend was Northern Ireland’s record international goalscorer Rachel Furness (below), who bagged her first goals of the season as Liverpool Women beat Burnley 4-0 in the third round of the FA Cup.
Speaking to irishfa.com Furness said: “Great win today and happy to get on the scoresheet. It was a tough game against an organised side but I’m happy to be in the hat for the next round.
“I’ve had a few assists recently and I take pride in that but it was a relief to finally score and hopefully they are the first of many.”
Meanwhile, Jamal Lewis started his third successive Premier League game for Newcastle United who remain joint bottom of the table following a 4-0 defeat at Leicester City who had to substitute Jonny Evans after just six minutes because of a suspected hamstring injury.
Foxes boss Brendan Rodgers admitted he is expecting Evans to be unavailable for some time.
“It’s unfortunate for Jonny,” he said after the game. “It looks like he might be out for a period of time, but we’ll get that scanned tomorrow.”
Elsewhere in the top flight Stuart Dallas’ Leeds United conceded an injury-time penalty to go down 3-2 at Chelsea, while Craig Cathcart played the full 90 minutes of a 2-1 reverse at newly promoted Brentford.
In League One, Bailey Peacock-Farrell was again the hero of the hour for Sheffield Wednesday when he saved a first half penalty in the 2-0 win at Crewe Alexandra. It was the 25-year-old’s fifth save from the spot this season; three for the Owls and two for Northern Ireland.
🧤 Bailey’s at it again 🤩👏 #GAWA #SWFC pic.twitter.com/aTsibOyXGX— Northern Ireland (@NorthernIreland) December 12, 2021
Fleetwood Town midfielder Paddy Lane was named man of the match for his performance in the 2-1 home success over Gillingham on Saturday. The Under 21 international, who was one of five Northern Ireland players in the Fleetwood squad, recently extended his contract until 2024 and admitted winning the award rounded off a perfect week for him.
“The man of the match was the cherry on the top of the cake for me,” he said. “I’m playing regularly and getting results with my mates at the end of the day.
“I was buzzing when the club offered me a new contract, over the moon even because I know it’s what I have been working towards. But the main thing is making sure we get three points week in, week out.”
Back on the goalscoring front Billy McKay hit his 11th of the campaign as Inverness Caledonian Thistle trounced Morton 6-1 in the Scottish Championship while Lewis McCann was among the scorers in Dunfermline Athletic’s 3-3 home draw with Queen of the South.
Central defender Daniel Finlayson, who is currently on loan at Kelty Hearts from Rangers, scored his first ever professional goal in a 6-1 win over Albion Rovers, while Matty Lund scored his fifth of the season as Salford City lost by the odd goal in three at Mansfield Town.
Finally, Under 21 international Liam Ravenhill came on as a substitute in Doncaster Rovers' narrow 1-0 victory over Shrewsbury Town to make his league debut for the club.