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PA Long Reads

Let Them Eat Cake: The Wire, Pricing Children’s Lives, And The Death Of The GAA

It has become alarmingly clear, particularly in relation to the ongoing Orkambi drug crisis, that many of the problems Ireland faces today are likely to engulf and ultimately destroy the GAA in the coming years.    At the time of writing this, two cousins of mine, Marisa and her six-year-old daughter Hannah, are residing in the University Hospital in Limerick. …

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One Year On: How Jürgen Klopp Has Transformed Liverpool

SWANSEA, WALES - OCTOBER 01: Jurgen Klopp, Manager of Liverpool looks on during the Premier League match between Swansea City and Liverpool at Liberty Stadium on October 1, 2016 in Swansea, Wales. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Jürgen Klopp strode into the Anfield press room one year ago with one simple objective for his new club’s fans – “to turn doubters into believers.” Within minutes of his first press conference getting underway, he had every journalist and photographer in that room in the palm of his hand – as well as the thousands watching live at home. Liverpool …

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Opinion: This Is England, Eddie Jones

Everything seemed to be going so well for Eddie Jones and his England team, before the same old problems that have blighted English rugby for so long began to rear their ugly heads once more. The Red Rose has had plenty of new dawns in the last 13 years since the glorious times of 2003, but the golden aura that …

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The Cross-Channel Conundrum – It’s Complicated

1971: Arsenal Football Club player Charlie George stands between George Graham and a fellow player who are holding the FA Cup on his head. (Photo by A. Jones/Express/Getty Images)

In this strange paradoxical little island of ours, it is a curious fact that you can make a pretty educated guess at an Irishman’s age by the English soccer team that he supports. For instance, there exists a thriving community of fifty-something Irish Leeds United fans, for the simple reason that they were at an impressionable age around the time …

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Passing the Buck: The Evolution Of Ireland’s Footballing DNA

PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 13: Wes Hoolahan (C) of Republic of Ireland celebrates scoring his team's first goal with his team mate Glenn Whelan (L) and Robbie Brady (R) during the UEFA EURO 2016 Group E match between Republic of Ireland and Sweden at Stade de France on June 13, 2016 in Paris, France. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

“A nation holds its breath…” As Ireland continue on the road to the 2018 World Cup against Georgia on Thursday evening, The Opel Jersey analyse how Ireland’s style of play has changed over the years, and how it still needs to evolve yet further. _____ In the days and weeks following Ireland’s 2-2 draw with Serbia in Belgrade, much discourse focused on …

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The Italian Job: Is Serie A On The Rise Again?

ROME, ITALY - OCTOBER 02: Kostas Manolas of AS Roma celebrates after scoring the team's second goal during the Serie A match between AS Roma and FC Internazionale at Stadio Olimpico on October 2, 2016 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Paolo Bruno/Getty Images )

Italian football has been in steep decline for the last decade or so; Serie A’s glory days are a distant memory. The league that once saw AC Milan’s holy trinity of Marco van Basten, Frank Rikjard and Ruud Gullit stomp its pitches, questioned Denis Bergkamp’s credentials as a top-class striker and gobbled up Europe’s elite players season after season is …

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Opinion: Expanding The World Cup Further Would Be A Disaster

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND - MARCH 18: FIFA president Gianni Infantino speaks during a press conference after the FIFA executive committee meeting at the FIFA headquarters on March 18, 2016 in Zurich, Switzerland. (Photo by Valeriano Di Domenico/Getty Images)

Fifa president Gianni Infantino has proposed expanding the World Cup from 32 to 48 teams. According to the BBC, Mr Infantino has suggested that 16 of these countries would be eliminated after a preliminary knockout round. This would ruin the World Cup. 32 teams at a World Cup finals is more than enough. As far as the beautiful game is concerned, the …

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The View From Georgia: Weiss Will Be Planning ‘Smash And Grab’ Victory Against Ireland

Ireland have relied on luck and last gasp heroics against Georgia in the past. Alastair Watt gives Póg Mo Goal the inside view from the visitors to Dublin. – What are the hopes for the current qualification series? The realistic aim is for Georgia to avoid bottom spot and anything higher than fifth would be a good outcome. Moldova are perceived as beatable …

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Exclusive – IRUPA CEO Omar Hassanein: The Stigma Of The Macho Rugby Player Is Being Broken Down

Omar Hassanein

IRUPA CEO Omar Hassanein was in Belfast on Tuesday night to speak as part of IRUPA’s Tackle Your Feelings panel discussions concerning mental health issues in rugby. Ulster and Ireland winger Tommy Bowe was at the event and said that it was encouraging to see “that IRUPA have committed to helping the rugby community and beyond come together and learn how to tackle their feelings”. …

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