Match Report by James Donnelly
Longford played host to Limerick on Saturday last at City Calling Stadium in the clubs only home pre season friendly.
The Limerick side ran out 1-0 winners courtesy of Billy Dennehy on a cold, dark afternoon at the Strokestown Road venue.
The first half was fairly uneventful for both sides. Shane Elworthy and Peter Hopkins combining on the right hand side for Longford caused a few problems for Limerick. Shane O’Connor had the first real chance for De Town after his strike from outside the box just went over the bar.
Mark O’Sullivan rattled the crossbar for Limerick with a powerful header in the 12th minute which saw the Premier Division outfit retain most of the possession thereafter.
Elworthy was in the thick of it again not too long after when a wayward cross almost found its way into the back of the Limerick net but Brendan Clarke recovered well to keep it out.
Limerick marched back up the field only 3 minutes later with Daniel Kearns gaining possession before laying it off to Billy Dennehy who fired it into the bottom corner to put the Shannonsiders 1-0 up after 35 minutes.
Neale Fenn made two changes at half time, goalkeeper Jack Brady was replaced by Michael Kelly and Karl Chambers came on in place of Shane Elworthy. Chambers was straight into the action, putting in a few good crosses but nobody was there to connect with them. Daniel O’Reilly then played in a diagonal ball to Sam Verdon but it was just above his head. Verdon played a key role in midfield and will no doubt be one of our key players this season.
The second half, although slightly more entertaining than the first, showed no real signs of picking up. The rain and wind were a major factor and both teams struggled with the conditions.
Tristan Noack-Hofmann, Michael McDonnell, Aodh Dervin, Evan Galvin and a trialist all also got a run out with playing time before Limerick eventually ran out winners.
Next up is a friendly versus Ashbourne United on Tuesday where Neale will be looking to finalize his starting 11 and get a win in what will hopefully be a great season for Longford Town.
Longford Town: Jack Brady (GK), Shane Elworthy, Alan Kehoe, Adam O’Connor, Dan O’Reilly, Dean Zambra (Captain), Peter Hopkins, Shane O’Connor, Chris Mulhall, Sam Verdon, Darren Meenan.
Subs: Tristan Noack-Hofmann, Karl Chambers, Michael McDonnell, Evan Galvin, Aodh Dervin, Andy O’Reilly, Michael Kelly, Nika Kalandarishvili (Trialist)