Irish Footballers that Played for Manchester United - Paddy Roche
Paddy Roche - Introduction
Paddy Roche was born in Dublin on 4 January 1951. Roche began his senior club career playing for Shelbourne in the League of Ireland. While still playing for Shelbourne he won his first international cap for Ireland. Roche had already made over 100 appearances for Shels when Tommy Docherty paid £15,000 in October 1973 to sign the keeper for Manchester United.
Paddy Roche & Manchester United
It wasn't until 8 February 1975 that Paddy Roche made his Manchester United debut. It was a losing debut in the old Second Division when Roche lined out against Oxford United at the Manor Ground. He retained his place for his home debut at Old Trafford and he kept a clean sheet as United beat Hull City 2-0.
Roche did not make another appearance until the next season when United were back in the First Division. He was given a run of five consecutive matches in November 1975. While Roche kept two clean sheets he also shipped ten goals in three losses to Liverpool, Manchester City, and Arsenal. He didn't make another appearance that season.
Paddy Roche made his most appearances in the 1977/78 season when he started in 23 matches taking over from Alex Stepney for the second half of the season. Roche began the 1978/79 season still in possession of the goalkeepers jersey and held on to it until November when he lost his place to Gary Bailey. In the next two seasons Roche made just five appearances for United.
Paddy Roche made his last appearance for Manchester United on 5 December 1981 against Southampton at the Dell. United lost 3-2
Paddy Roche - Republic of Ireland Career
Paddy Roche won eight caps for the Republic of Ireland. While still playing for Shels in the League of Ireland, Roche made an inauspicious Irish debut against Austria on 10 October 1971. In a 1972 European Nations Cup qualifier Liam Tuohy's team was thrashed 6-0. Things improved for Roche for his second cap.
He was part of the Irish team that famously trounced the USSR 3-0 at Dalymount Park three years later with Don Givens scoring a hat trick in a 1976 European Nations Cup qualifier. He also played a year later in the same qualifying group against Turkey at the same venue when Givens again scored all the goals in a comprehensive 4-0 victory. Paddy Roche kept three clean sheets during his eight appearances for Ireland.
Paddy Roche - Manchester United & Ireland Statistics
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