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Ireland win takes pressure off Scotland ahead of England game, says Martin

first_img Scotland striker Chris Martin (right) 1 Chris Martin admits Scotland’s European Championship qualifying win against the Republic of Ireland has taken the pressure off ahead of England’s visit on Tuesday night.A terrific goal by Shaun Maloney at Celtic Park on Friday night took the Scots level with the Irish and Germany on seven points, three behind Group D leaders Poland.And the 26-year-old Derby striker says Scotland can enjoy the game against the Auld Enemy at Parkhead safe in the knowledge three vital Euro points have been secured.“The pressure is off a little bit in that game.“Hopefully we can go and enjoy ourselves and give the fans something to shout about again.“It was a massive win, and obviously we will take massive confidence into the England game.“Hopefully we will be on a high and so will the fans.”Suffolk-born Martin played for England Under-19s but qualifies for Scotland through his Glaswegian father and he made his debut as a substitute in the friendly against Nigeria at Craven Cottage in May.While acknowledging the importance of beating Martin O’Neill’s side, Martin believes the bid to reach France in 2016 is likely to go to the last game of the campaign.“There are still another few games to go and I think it will go down to the wire to be honest with you,” he added.“There are good teams in this group and it has been said many times that it is probably the toughest group and games can be decided by one goal, a set-piece or a little bit of luck.“We know it is going to be that tight.“We need to make sure we concentrate on every single game and get as many points as we can and see where that takes us.“I don’t think we can worry too much about other teams.“We need to focus on our own jobs and if we do that well enough then hopefully that will mean we qualify.”The only downside for Martin against Ireland was missing the target from a Steven Naismith cut-back.“I should have done better,” he said.“I was disappointed that I didn’t score but thankfully Shaun got me out of jail a little bit with a great finish.“We knew it was going to be a tough game because they had picked up a lot of points.“I was perhaps a little bit surprised that they didn’t play a bit more football but we stood up to it very well.“We were the ones who tried to play more football and with us being at home the onus was probably on us to come out and play a little bit more and we felt that we did that.“We could and probably should have scored more goals.“We created a good few chances. Obviously mine was one of them but it didn’t matter in the end.“It didn’t matter who scored, as long we win, that is the main thing.”Scotland v England is live on talkSPORT at 8pm on 18 Novemberlast_img read more

Shop boss who stole €315,000 to fee gambling habit escapes jail because of “impeccable character”

first_imgA supermarket manager who stole more than €315,000 to feed his gambling addiction has escaped going to prison because of his previous “impeccable character.”Wayne Johnston pleaded guilty to stealing the huge sum of cash from the Cost Cutter Supermarket in Ballybofey to pay for bets with his Paddy Power online account. Letterkenny Circuit Court heard how the father-of-two put the jobs of up to one hundred people at risk because of his gambling.Johnston, who is in his 30s and originally from Thurles in Co Tipperary, stole sums of hundreds of euro to up to €3,500 before finally being caught.The court was told that the thefts had a huge personal effect on the owner of the business, Michael Doherty.The victim said nothing will ever take away the stress and worry as well as the sleepless nights and mental torture that himself and his family suffered.And he added that without the support of suppliers and partners, the jobs of 100 people would have been in danger.“I don’t think I’ll ever be the same person again. I lost a part of me,” he said.The accused told how Mr Doherty was more than just an employer to him and that they had developed a friendship outside of work.“When the gambling took over I was guilty and embarrassed for taking Michael’s money,” he said.He added that he never thought of the bigger picture and how it might put the jobs of one hundred people in jeopardy.“I’m so sorry for what happened. I was very embarrassed and ashamed and I didn’t realise I could have closed doors to his business. I knew I was taking the money but did not realise the damage I was doing to him or his mother and father,” said Johnston.He said he is now getting treatment for his gambling addiction and his wife Michelle is now in charge of all the family’s finances.His wife gave evidence saying that the family now speak openly about Wayne’s addiction and if he is ever feeling vulnerable.The accused said he now has plans to try and back the money to Mr Doherty saying he is prepared to pay €600 each month for the next 30 years as a way of compensating his former employer.Johnston is currently working for a courier company and his employer is aware of the court case.Passing sentence Judge John Aylmer said he considered the charge of theft of €315,303 merited a sentence of three years in prison while the other two sample charges merited sentences of 18 months each.However, he said there were many mitigating factors in the case including Mr Johnston’s impeccable character and that he had no previous charges.He added that he pleaded guilty at the first opportunity and that he had shown obvious remorse and shame at what he had done.He said Johnston had a history of a chronic, pathological and compulsive gambling addiction.The probation service report was very favourable and that it is unlikely that he will re-offend.Judge Aylmer sentenced Johnston to two years for the first charge and one year each for each of the other two charges to run concurrently.However, he then suspended all sentences and ordered him to keep the peace and be of good behaviour for three years.He also ordered him to continue to pay €7,200 per year to the victim.“This is simply a matter of honour for Mr Johnston to undertake and to pay it over to the victim for rest of his working life,” said Judge Aylmer.Mr Johnston wiped tears from his eyes and left the court with his wife.Shop boss who stole €315,000 to fee gambling habit escapes jail because of “impeccable character” was last modified: May 4th, 2018 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:BallybofeyCost Cuttercourtgambling addictionstoleWayne Johnstonlast_img read more