Sign up to the Irish FA Newsletter today

Keep up-to-date with all the latest news from the Irish FA including ticket updates, match information, competitions, articles and much more.
Thank you

Monday 30 Oct 2023
NI Player Watch | Devlin scores on first league start for Portsmouth

Portsmouth midfielder Terry Devlin celebrated his first league start for the South Coast outfit by hitting the winning goal in their hard-earned 3-2 victory at bottom-of-the-table Reading in League One at the weekend.

After being 2-0 down inside the opening half hour, the former Glentoran player completed the turnaround by netting a 58th minute winner to extend Pompey’s unbeaten league run this season to 15 games.

“To get the goal was amazing and the fans were amazing,” the teenager told the club website. “I really didn't know what to do for the celebration. I was just buzzing.

“At training on Thursday, the gaffer announced the team. When he called my name out I was a bit shocked obviously, after being left out of the squad on Tuesday. 

“I was just buzzing when he said my name,” added Devlin. “It just shows that to get promoted you need your full squad and you need to be ready when called upon, and thankfully I was ready.” 

Elsewhere in League One, striker Dion Charles scored his fifth goal in eight games as Bolton Wanderers moved into third spot in the table with a 2-0 win at the Valley against Charlton Athletic. 

In the Championship, Trai Hume scored his first of the season as Sunderland bounced back from three successive league defeats to take all three points in a 3-1 win at home over Norwich City. 

Striker Kyle Vassell took his goal tally for the season to five as Kilmarnock jumped up to fourth in the Scottish Premiership following their 2-0 win at Rugby Park against bottom side St Johnstone. 

Meanwhile, in the Premier League, Jonny Evans played his 100th Manchester United game at Old Trafford as Eric ten Hag’s men suffered a 3-0 derby defeat to champions Manchester City.   

Speaking to MUTV, Evans said: “We were probably even in the first half in terms of chances created and we felt comfortable. I think the second goal was the biggest one, so quickly in the second half, as it kind of killed us because we were chasing from two goals down. 

“Rashy (Marcus Rashford) had that chance and if it goes in then it changes the momentum a bit. I think once they started passing the ball we got disjointed in terms of our pressing and we got a bit too emotional. 

“It's a derby, it’s understandable, you’re chasing the game and want to get back into it, but we became a bit unorganised.”

After missing the opening weeks of the season with an ankle injury, on-loan defender Aaron Donnelly finally made his debut for Dundee in their 2-0 victory at Livingston, a result which saw the visitors' goalkeeper Trevor Carson extend his clean sheet record to a very credible 279 minutes. 

In the U21 Premier League, the prolific Callum Marshall continued his fantastic scoring run with a hat-trick in West Ham United’s thumping five-goal victory at home to Middlesbrough. 

It was the 18-year-old’s second hat-trick of the season for the Hammers and brought his total for the season to 15 in just 10 outings for Steve Potts’ under-21 side. 

After the contest Potts was full of praise for the former Linfield player. He said: “What hits me is how hard he works. He just wants to find and win the ball and he does so much for the team as well as score goals.

“That can never be underestimated because as he goes up the levels it is harder to get goals. But even if he doesn’t get goals he brings a lot and can set the tone for the team.” 

Finally, Jordan Jones continued his good form with another assist in Wigan Athletic’s 2-0 success at home to Shrewsbury Town, while Paddy Lane chalked up two assists for unbeaten Portsmouth in their win at Reading.