There were emotional scenes in Dublin tonight as fans marked the centenary of Ireland’s last shot on target. It’s 100 years since Seán Óg Murphy’s deflected cross was safely gathered by goalkeeper Scott McHamish in a 9 – 0 hammering by Scotland at Hampden Park — still Ireland’s heaviest defeat on the road.
“It’s an emotional day,” Republic of Ireland boss Martin O’Neill told Soccer on Sunday. “Seán Óg’s deflected cross inspired many generations who came after. My grandfather saw the cross with his own eyes and suffered a stroke. My grandmother says he was never the same. But would he have traded seeing the cross, if it meant never having the stroke? I’d imagine he would, yes. It was a bad stroke.”
“Will I see a shot on target in my lifetime?” added O’Neill. “I think that’s probably not realistic. The fans maybe get a wee bit carried away with talk of Seán Óg. But we should remember, technically it wasn’t even a shot. It was a cross. And it was deflected. A shot on target would be great, but let’s keep our heads out of the clouds.”