Match Report

MATCH REPORT: Town Cup run continues after victory over Shelbourne

Sun Aug 26th 2018

Match Report by Tony Ghee

Longford Town progressed to the Quarter-Finals of the Irish Daily Mail FAI Cup with a comfortable two-nil victory over Shelbourne, as goals from Dylan McGlade and Daniel O’Reilly sealed a place in the last eight for the Midlanders for the second successive season.

It was a thoroughly deserved victory for the home side as they dominated proceedings and outplayed the visitors for much of the contest despite missing several key players.

Karl Chambers versatility was again demonstrated as he slotted in at left-back in the absence of Mick McDonnell, with Tristan Noack-Hofmann moving across to partner O’Reilly in the centre of defence.

Shane Elworthy and Peter Hopkins made welcome returns to the starting eleven after their injury absences and came through the game unscathed.

In the second minute, Dean Zambra gained possession and set-up Jamie Doyle, his shot was blocked, and Aodh Dervin fired the rebound just over the Shelbourne bar.

On nine minutes, superb wing wizardry from man-of-the-match McGlade bamboozled the Shels defence, and his cross resulted in Zambra glancing a header well wide from a good position.

Longford came close again in the nineteenth minute when the towering O’Reilly headed a McGlade cross inches over the bar.

Shels striker David O’Sullivan had the visitors first opportunity a minute later but he volleyed over from a John Ross Wilson cross.

The Dubliners enjoyed a good fifteen minute spell just after the half-hour mark creating three good chances.

On thirty-one minutes, Town keeper Mick Kelly produced a magnificent save to keep out Lorcan Fitzgerald’s close range strike from an Evans corner with Greg Moorehouse rifling the rebound over the crossbar.

Two minutes after that, Paddy Kavanagh skipped past the challenge of Town centre-back O’Reilly, raced in on goal, but just as he was about to pull the trigger, Noack-Hofmann got across to make a brilliant goal-saving challenge.

Just before half-time, Town keeper Kelly was called into action again as he kept out Gavin Boyne’s deflected long range strike.

Longford Town struck in first-half stoppage time as McGlade calmly despatched a penalty to the bottom left corner after he had been brought down by Reece McEnteer.

Town stopper Kelly produced a stunning save five minutes into the second-half. Kavanagh played in Adam Evans but his fifteen yard shot was brilliantly stopped by Kelly.

The home side were in the ascendancy for the rest of the match and on fifty-three minutes, O’Reilly’s downward header from McGlade’s corner produced a marvellous save from Dean Delaney.

In the sixty-fifth minute, a quick-fire one-two between McGlade and Doyle carved open the Shelbourne rearguard, McGlade surged into the box and his cut-back found Meenan just inside the penalty area, however, Meenan’s firm strike came back off the post.

Longford ensured victory on seventy-two minutes when O’Reilly volleyed home a McGlade corner to finally beat Shelbourne at the fourth attempt this season, and book the Town’s passage into the quarter-finals of the Irish Daily Mail FAI Cup.

TEAM LINE-UPS:

Longford Town: Kelly, Elworthy (Tilou 94 minutes), O’Reilly, Noack-Hofmann, Chambers, Meenan, Dervin, Zambra, Hopkins (Dillon 90 minutes), Doyle, McGlade.

Shelbourne: Delaney, Ross Wilson, Prendergast, McEnteer, Fitzgerald, Moorehouse, Byrne (Boyne 26 minutes), Moore, Evans (Farrell 75 minutes), Kavanagh (English 57 minutes), O’Sullivan.

Referee: John McLaughlin (Athlone).

MATCH REPORT: Galway United 1-4 Longford Town

Sat Aug 18th 2018

MATCH REPORT BY TONY GHEE

Two goals each from Jamie Doyle and Dylan McGlade helped Longford Town to inflict the heaviest defeat of the season on Galway Utd as they romped to a four goals to one victory over the Tribesman at Eamon Deacy Park.

This crucial victory ends the Westerners play-off hopes, but keeps the ‘Red & Black’ firmly in the promotion hunt just two points behind fourth placed Drogheda.

Longford were missing two quality players from last week’s squad that dumped Premier Division Sligo Rovers out of the FAI Cup as both Sam Verdon and Shane Elworthy failed to recover from last week’s respective injuries. The Town also suffered another injury towards the end of the contest as Jamie Hollywood was stretchered off.

The Midlanders played the better football in the opening half and created the better chances and fully merited their one goal interval advantage.

In the twelfth minute, Dylan McGlade cut in from the left and fired a twenty-two yard shot that Galway keeper Tadhg Ryan tipped over the bar and on fourteen minutes, a Karl Chambers long range effort flew over the Galway Bar.

The Town took a deserved lead on the quarter-hour mark with a superbly worked goal. Jamie Doyle knocked the ball into the path of McGlade who switched the play to Darren Meenan on the right wing, and his pin-point cross found the inrushing Doyle who buried the ball into the back of the Galway net from close range.

Galway’s only decent first-half effort came in the twenty-ninth minute when Ryan Connolly’s quickly taken free-kick caught out the Town rearguard but a lunging shot from Stephen Walsh went just wide.

The visitors should have increased their advantage just before half-time when an unmarked Doyle headed badly wide from a Meenan right-wing cross.

Longford doubled their lead just six minutes into the second-half. A clever back-heeled flick from Meenan on the right picked out Jamie Hollywood in space, and he passed to Doyle who rifled home a powerful shot to the net off Galway keeper Ryan.

Longford sealed all three points just four minutes later as McGlade raced in from the left after receiving a great pass from Doyle and somehow he powered a shot to the bottom right corner of the Galway net from a very tight angle.

The irresistible McGlade almost made it four on sixty-nine minutes but his shot that seemed destined for the top corner was magnificently saved by Ryan.

Ryan again produced a stunning save just two minutes later as he kept out Daniel O’Reilly’s close range header.

The Town completed the rout when McGlade scored his second on seventy-eight minutes with a low, crisp drive that flew past Ryan and nestled in the bottom left corner.

Galway grabbed an injury time consolation with the last attack of the match as substitute Carlton Ubaezuono scored from a tight angle on the left.


TEAM LINE-UPS

Galway Utd: Ryan, Horgan, Williams, Walsh, Ludden, Barry, Conway, Byrne, Russell, Connolly, McCormack.
Substitutions: Melody for Conway (half-time), Ubaezuono for Russell (64 minutes), Coyne for McCormack (84 minutes).

Longford Town: Kelly, Chambers, McDonnell, O’Reilly, Noack-Hofmann, Zambra, Dervin, Hollywood, Meenan, Doyle, McGlade.
Substitutions: O’Connor for Chambers, Dillon for Doyle (both 76 minutes), Ryan for Dervin (81 minutes).

Match Report: Sligo Rovers 0-1 Longford Town (FAI Cup 1st Rnd)

Sun Aug 12th 2018

Match Report by James Donnelly

Irish Daily Mail FAI Cup First Round

Sligo Rovers FC 0-1 Longford Town FC

11/08/18, The Showgrounds, 7.45pm

Longford Town FC dumped Sligo Rovers out of the FAI Cup in the first round for the second successive year on Friday night as Jamie Hollywoods 65th minute goal was enough to seal the victory for the Red and Black at the Showgrounds.

On a wet and windy night, De Town got some bad news before the whistle was even blown, Shane Elworthy picking up a knock and having to be replaced in the starting eleven by Tristan Noack-Hofmann.

Longford had the opening chance of the game straight from tip-off. Gaining posession, Aodh Dervin (who had a terrific game in midfield) found Dylan McGlade who turned his man and shot from inside, forcing the early save from Beeney in the Sligo goal.

Sligo could have opened the scoring only moments later when David Cawley found himself free in the box but his speculative shot from the right side took a deflection and bounced narrowly wide of the Longford goal.

Town keeper Michael Kelly was yellow carded in the 12th minute after mistakenly picking the ball up outside his own box. The resulting free came to nothing in the end but he will want to forget about that one!

Neale Fenn was forced to make another unplanned early change when Sam Verdon had to go off with what looked like a nasty ankle injury. The challenge on Verdon warranted a yellow card to be produced and the recently returned Peter Hopkins came on in place. Verdon had been performing well up to that point, winning the ball in the air to lay if off to McGlade and Meenan on the wings. Longford will hope that the injury isn’t as serious as it looked as Verdon has played a key role in the hunt for promotion this season.

Rovers had a glorious opportunity to go 1-0 up on 32 minutes. A corner from McCabe was met in the air by Callan-McFadden but his header hit the cross bar and was cleared away from danger. A real let off for Longford but they can thank Michael Kelly who seemed to have gotten the slightest of touches to tip it on to the cross bar. One of many saves he would have to make throughout the night.

While Sligo pushed forward, Longford didn’t give them too much time on the ball and applied pressure. Peter Hopkins went close on 40 minutes when the ball broke on the halfway line to send him clear but he never fully connected with the ball and his shot drifted wide of Beeney’s post.

[caption id="attachment_18776" align="aligncenter" width="740"] Karl Chambers in action during last years FAI Cup win over Sligo Rovers at the City Calling Stadium.[/caption]

Longford had a shout for a penalty on 43 minutes, Jamie Hollywood on the end of a challenge just on the edge of the box. Town fans called for a peno but on inspection of the replay, it was evidently a yard or so outside the area. The resulting free from Daniel O’Reilly was straight into the hands of Beeney.

Going in 0-0 at half time, many Longford supporters were optimistic that the team could pull off another win, following on from last seasons cup win over Sligo at the City Calling Stadium.

Sligo started the second half with a purpose and could have taken the lead only a few minutes in when Mikey Drennan got free down the left hand side before turning in past Karl Chambers but his low flying shot rattled the bottom of the far post and bounced straight back into Kellys hands.

Dylan McGlade, who many were calling man of the match after another skillful display, had the opportunity to put Longford in the driving seat on 62 minutes. His long range effort stinging the hands of Beeney in goal who put it out for a corner.

Town supporters didn’t have to wait long for a goal to come though. Only 3 minutes later, McGlade once again produced a moment of magic when he rounded the Sligo defender on the touch line before playing it back to Jamie Hollywood who cooly slotted it into the far corner. Beeney should have done better but full credit to Longford, they kept up the pressure and it paid off.

From then on, Rovers began to mount attack after attack. Michael Kelly, who could have gotten a look in for man of the match also, was forced to save on a number of occasions for Longford and kept the side in it. Up the other end, McGlade went close again, shooting from the right side, his curled shot was palmed away by Beeney for a corner.

While Sligo tried and tried, Longford’s defence held firm. The Bit O’Red couldn’t break down the back 4 and it became evident when they resorted to long balls straight up the top in the last 10 minutes. Mikey Drennan had one last chance for Sligo after he raced through on goal but Michael Kelly was there again, this time denying him with a brilliant save using his foot.

Overall, a great night for Neale Fenn and Co, who will need all the positivity and momentum they can get going into Friday night’s game away against Galway United in the run in for a promotion playoff spot.

Sligo Rovers: Beeney, Twardek, Callan-McFadden, Mahon, McClean, Donelon, Cawley, McCabe (c), Lynch, Cretaro, Drennan

Subs: McGinty, Sharkey, Keaney (replaced Mahon), Wixted, McAleer (replaced Cretaro), Kerrigan, Morrison.

Longford Town: Kelly, Noack-Hofmann, O’Reilly, McDonnell, Chambers, Meenan, Zambra (c), Hollywood, Dervin, McGlade, Verdon.

Subs: Kelly, Hopkins (replaced Verdon), Ryan, O’Neill, O’Connor, Dillon, Temolo.

Match Report: Shelbourne FC 6-1 Longford Town FC

Sat Jul 28th 2018

Match Report by James Donnelly

Longford Town FC suffered their heaviest defeat of the 2018 season on Friday night as Neale Fenn’s 10 man team went down 6-1 to Shelbourne at Tolka Park. De Town came into the game off the back of a comfortable 3-0 win at home to Wexford FC last week so confidence was high going into the game.

Shelbourne had the first chance of the night, when former Town player and club record goal-scorer David O’Sullivan’s glancing header went wide of the post. From then, Longford settled into the game and began a period of pressure on the home team. New Town signing and former Shelbourne man Jamie Doyle went close, only being denied by the hands of Dean Delany in goal. Dylan McGlade caused problems on the wing along with Karl Chambers and Shane Elworthy on the opposite side.

Against the run of play however, Shelbourne got their first goal of the night just before half time, when a free in to the box was met in the air by Dave Mulcahy who flicked it into the far corner to head home.

Town immidiately responded in the second half and got the equalizer 5 minutes in. Tristan Noack-Hofmann made a great run down the left wing before cutting inside and earning a corner. McGlades delivery was met by Michael McDonnell who’s header towards goal fell to Sam Verdon who tapped it in from close range to level things up.

[caption id="attachment_18422" align="aligncenter" width="521"] Sam Verdon celebrates scoring Longford Town’s equalizer. Photo: Ken Keenan Photography[/caption]

From then on, things went downhill. Shelbourne got their second of the night on 68 minutes when a good break saw the ball driven across the box before it fell to Karl Moore on the left who drove it under the legs of both Elworthy and Kelly in the Town goal.

A moment of madness only 2 minutes later saw the home side get their 3rd goal of the night. Daniel O’Reilly picked up the ball in the centre circle, holding posession, he turned back towards Sam Verdon to pass it off. As he did, the ref ran towards him and the ball ricocheted off him and into the path of a Shels man who sent David O’Sullivan through 1 on 1 with Kelly and the former Longford record goal scorer made no mistake in slotting it home, much to the anger of the travelling support and assistant Manager Daire Doyle who was inevitably sent to the stand.

Doyle went close again for Longford, this time turning on to his left foot inside the Shels box and forcing Delany to pull off a stunning save from close range. Things went from bad to worse for De Town however, Doyle was harshly sent off follwing an exchange with the ref after he had been deemed to have fouled a Shelbourne player.

Shels then took control of the game in the last quarter. Karl Moore completed his hat-trick to make it 5-1 before the Dublin side were awarded a soft penalty in the last few minutes in which James English cooly shot low to the left to make it 6.

A tough, tough night for Neale Fenn and co.

TEAM LINE-UPS

Shelbourne: Dean Delany, John Ross Wilson, Dave Mulcahy, Lorcan Fitzgerald, Aidan Collins, Karl Moore, Mark Hughes, Adam Evans, Gavin Boyne, David O’Sullivan, James English

Subs: Lee Steacy, Dayle Rooney, James O’Brien (sub for Gavin Boyne), Greg Moorehouse, Reece McEnteer(sub for Aidan Collins), Cian Kavanagh, Shane Farrell

Longford Town: Michael Kelly, Shane Elworthy, Michael McDonnell, Daniel O’Reilly, Tristan Noack-Hofmann, Dylan McGlade, Jamie Hollywood, Aodh Dervin, Karl Chambers, Sam Verdon, Jamie Doyle (Red Card)]

Subs: Ben Kelly, Darren Meenan (sub for Jamie Hollywood), Eoin O’Neill (sub for Sam Verdon), Evan O’Connor, Dean Dillon (sub for Karl Chambers), Dean Zambra, Warren Mitchell.

Hear from Longford Town FC Manager Neale Fenn after the game: https://soundcloud.com/longford-town-tv/post-match-interview-with-neale-fenn-shelbourne-fc-270718

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