1. #D-DAY Ireland face Estonia at the Aviva Stadium this evening in the second leg of the Euro 2012 qualification play-offs. Giovanni Trapattoni’s men carry a 4-0 aggregate lead into the tie and will field a side strengthened by the return of Kevin Doyle and John O’Shea from suspension and injury, respectively.
Elsewhere in Europe, Portugal face Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia defend a three-goal advantage against Turkey and the Czech Republic make the trip to Podgorica to face Montenegro.
2. #LONDON2012 Leaping from one major sporting event to another, Britain has announced the possibility of deploying ground-to-air missiles during next summer’s Olympic Games. The news comes after it was revealed that, in response to concerns about domestic security, the United States plans to send somewhere in the region of 500 FBI agents to serve as escorts to US athletes and officials.
3. #PREZCUP Steve Stricker has declared himself fit to participate in this week’s President’s Cup. The 44-year-old veteran has spent the last two months struggling with a neck injury that left him with a severely weakened left side. He’ll be expected to partner a resurgent Tiger Woods in both the fourballs and foursomes.
4. #TEVEZ Wayward striker Carlos Tevez has chosen to remain in his native Argentina rather than meet a deadline for his return to Manchester City. The player’s representatives are apparently in contact with the Eastlands club, but both parties have thus far refused comment. The saga rumbles on…
5. #BENJAMINS The NBA appears set to lose a full season to the ongoing profit-sharing dispute between players and franchise owners, after the union representing the interests of the former opted to spurn a final effort at compromise. With a fresh round of negotiations yet to be scheduled and the players’ union currently in the process of disbanding, the situation looks intractable.
6. #U-21s A Robbie Brady-inspired Irish team beat Liechtenstein 2-0 at the Showgrounds last night. The Man United youngster scored a penalty on 13 minutes and then set up Aidan White, who scored Ireland’s second just before half time. While the scoreline may not have looked as impressive as the side’s 4-1 victory over the same opponents last month, it was equally dominant, as Noel King’s side were comfortable throughout.