Tag: drogheda united

Match Preview: Drogheda United FC v Longford Town FC

Thu May 2nd 2019

SSE Airtricity League First Division
Drogheda United FC v Longford Town FC
Friday 3rd May 2019

United Park | Kick-off 7.45pm

Match Preview By Kieran Burke (@kieranBTS)

Longford Town travel to County Louth on Friday night looking to banish the demons of last season, as De Town fell at the finish in the race for the play-offs against Drogheda United, Fridays hosts. A come from behind 2-1 win in the penultimate game of last season effectively secured the Drogs position in the play-offs, where Tim Clancy’s charges missed out on promotion after a dramatic two-legged tie against Shelbourne, who went on to lose in the final against Finn Harps.

With all that in mind, it has been a dramatic shift in form for both Longford and Drogheda United to start to 2019 First Division campaign with Longford Town currently the only unbeaten side in the League of Ireland, while Drogheda have struggled for consistency at times, leaving the 2007 Premier Division champions sitting in 4th place, four points behind Neale Fenn’s league leaders.

[caption id="attachment_21072" align="aligncenter" width="660"] Captain Dean Zambra and Defender Mick McDonnell pictured in action last season against Drogheda United at the City Calling Stadium.[/caption]

Drogheda United had a fantastic win on the road last weekend, traveling all the way down to St.Colman’s Park and coming away with an ultra-impressive 4-1 victory over Cobh Ramblers, while Longford showed their battling qualities in a scrappy 1-0 home triumph over a stubborn Limerick side. Dean Byrne was the match winner last Saturday for De Town and the former Hardwicke star will be hoping his stunning strike can kick start his 2019 campaign, having only returned to full fitness after a long term layoff last season.

In fact, Byrne was on the score-sheet with yet another sublime long range strike at United Park last season in a game De Town really should have won, conceding a 94th minute equalizer in a 1-1 draw. Ciaran Kelly was the Drogheda hero that night and the departure of the talented full back to St.Patrick’s Athletic has been a very difficult challenge for Tim Clancy and co to overcome at the start of this campaign. Double goal scorer in that crucial 2-1 win at the tail end of last season, Gareth McCaffrey has also since departed United Park and the strikers absence has clearly left Drodgeda lacking some cutting edge up front at times this year.

All in all, given Longford Town’s record breaking start to the 2019 season, many will fancy Neale Fenn’s team to repeat the win claimed over Drodgeda at City Calling Stadium earlier this season, a 3-0 victory that time, but having only lost at home once this season, Droghda will be yet another major test of De Town’s title credentials going forward.

Team News: Neale Fenn has a full selection of players to choose from.

MATCH REPORT: Longford Town 3-0 Drogheda United

Sun Mar 3rd 2019

Match Report by Tony Ghee

Longford Town recorded their first opening home league win since 2013 with a three-nil triumph over Drogheda United at the City Calling Stadium and in the process kept a second consecutive clean sheet, although the Town had to rely on the heroics of keeper Lee Steacy to remain in the contest at the interval.

The Town created the first opening in the fourth minute when Sam Verdon’s pass picked out striker Aaron Dobbs but his crisp, low shot was well saved by Paul Skinner.

On eleven minutes, Drogheda’s dangerous right-winger Adam Wixted weaved his way past two Town defenders only to hit his shot straight at Town stopper Lee Steacy.

Longford had a very lucky let-off on eighteen minutes when keeper Steacy came to the home side’s rescue. A superb ball over the top of the Town defence from Luke Gallagher located Mark Doyle inside the Town box, but Steacy produced an excellent save, and moments later, he was called into action again, as he tipped over a long range strike from Mark Hughes.

The ‘Red & Black’ nearly took the lead in the twenty-second minute as Dean Byrne’s brilliant pass released striker Dobbs, however, his shot across goal from the right whistled narrowly wide of Drogheda’s far post.

Longford keeper Steacy was in outstanding form and denied the visitors Hughes twice within sixty seconds on thirty-four minutes. Firstly, he produced a magnificent save to keep out a close range effort from the Drogheda man, and that was followed by an incredible save from a Hughes header after magical play from Wixted had created the chance.

A great knock down at the back post across goal from Verdon set-up Paul O’Connor, but just as the Town player was about to pull the trigger, Sean Brennan’s brilliant sliding challenge rescued the visitors.

Longford broke the deadlock in the sixty-second minute, Byrne seized possession after a mistake from Doyle and ran between the two Drogheda centre-halves before calmly guiding the ball past Skinner, into the bottom left-corner of the Drogheda net.

Dean Byrne opened the scoring for De Town in a 3-0 victory over Drogheda United

Shortly afterwards, Town came close to extending their lead but Breslin’s ball from the left was headed inches over by Dobbs.

Longford sealed the victory on eighty-three minutes with a stunning second goal. Verdon played a perfectly weighted pass to Elworthy on the right, his marauding run took him past Kane and his pin-point cross resulted in Dobbs’ diving header rattling the Drogheda net.

Longford rounded off the scoring in the ninety-first minute when substitute Hopkins beat the offside trap to run onto a Doyle pass, he rounded keeper Skinner and slotted home into the empty net.

TEAM LINE-UPS

Longford Town (4-3-2-1): Steacy, Chambers (Elworthy 81 minutes), Manley, Kenna, Breslin, Verdon, O’Connor, Dervin, Zambra, Byrne (86 mins), Dobbs (Doyle 84 mins)

Drogheda Utd (4-2-3-1): Skinner, Brown, Gallagher, McNally, Kane, Brennan, Hughes, Wixted, (Meaney 73 mins), Byrne, Doyle (Heaney 63 mins), Lyons

MATCH PREVIEW: Longford Town v Drogheda United

Thu Feb 28th 2019

Match Preview by Tony Ghee

Longford Town host their first league game of the 2019 season on Saturday night as they entertain Drogheda United at the City Calling Stadium with the game kicking off at 7.30pm. 

Neale Fenn’s charges kept a clean sheet at the Markets Field last weekend in their away draw to Limerick FC, while the Louth side recorded an emphatic four-nil victory at home to Cobh Ramblers as Mark Doyle twice, Chris Lyons, and Adam Wixted all rattled the Cobh net.

The major talking point of the week for the Midlanders was the return of talismanic midfielder Sam Verdon to the club. Verdon was a stand-out player for the ‘Red & Black’ last season until injury ended his season prematurely as Longford just missed out on the play-offs. Sam joined Premier Division side Finn Harps in the new year, but after his contract was cancelled last week, he jumped at the chance to rejoin the club, and he is a major acquisition for the season ahead.

Drogheda made the play-offs last season after coming from behind to beat Longford Town 2-1 at United Park in their third and final league meeting. The victory virtually assured that Drogheda would make the top four at Longford Town’s expense as two Gareth McCaffrey goals earned them all three crucial points after the Town had taken the lead courtesy of Dean Dillon.

In the earlier encounters, Longford won one-nil at the City Calling Stadium with the returned Sam Verdon bagging the contest’s only goal on twenty-seven minutes, while the opening encounter ended in a draw as Ciaran Kelly snatched a last gasp equaliser for Drogheda to cancel out Dean Byrne’s earlier salvo for Longford.

On the team news front, the newly re-signed Sam Verdon goes straight into the match day squad, but winger Carlton Ubaezuono and defender Kevin Knight remain sidelined through injury.

[caption id="attachment_20533" align="aligncenter" width="549"] The returning Sam Verdon, who makes a welcome return to De Town.[/caption]

Town lose to Drogheda to hand play-off initiative to the Louth side

Sat Sep 15th 2018

Match Report by Tony Ghee

Longford Town’s promotion play-off prospects hang by a very thin thread after a two goal salvo from Gareth McCaffrey earned promotion rivals Drogheda United a crucial two-one home victory last night.

The result means that Drogheda leapfrog Longford into the final play-off spot with a two point cushion and a superior goal difference going into the final round of matches next weekend.

Drogheda had the first chance on seven minutes when Richie Purdy’s quickly taken free-kick caught the Town defence napping, and the unmarked Chris Lyons whipped in a dangerous low cross that was just missed at the back post by the lunging Luke Gallagher.

Two minutes later, the home side came close again, as Gareth McCaffrey’s cross from the right picked out striker Lyons, only for Town keeper Mick Kelly to brilliantly save his close range strike.

Longford took the lead on fourteen minutes totally against the run of play. Town striker Dean Dillon won possession twenty-five yards out, weaved his way past three Drogheda defenders and magically curled a stunning twenty yard strike beyond Paul Skinner’s despairing dive into the bottom right corner.

Drogheda should have equalised in the thirty-second minute when William Hondermarck’s exquisite long-range ball over the top of the Town defence put in Mark Doyle, he charged into the box only to shoot wide when he should have rattled the Longford net.

Drogheda deservedly equalised on thirty-five minutes when McCaffrey’s brilliant twenty-five yard free kick from the left, rocketed past Town stopper Kelly and nestled in the bottom right corner.

McGlade could have restored the lead for Longford just before half time, but his lob from a difficult angle on the right over the outrushing home keeper Skinner sailed wide.

The Town had a great chance to regain the lead six minutes after the resumption. Karl Chambers brilliantly dispossessed Conor Kane and passed to McGlade, he inturn released Peter Hopkins with a cleverly disguised pass, Hopkins raced into the box and fired a low shot that Skinner saved with his feet.

On sixty-four minutes, Drogheda won a free-kick on the left which resulted in Gallagher firing McCaffrey’s dangerous ball wide.

Disaster struck for Longford on sixty-nine minutes when Lyons ball over a very high-line Town defence put McCaffrey in the clear, and although he looked well offside, his cool, composed, chipped finish past Kelly was allowed to stand.

Longford almost drew level three minutes later when Chambers just managed to beat Skinner to the ball, however, his sliding effort from a very tight angle hit the side-netting.

A mix-up between Dervin and Zambra almost resulted in a third goal for the home side but Lyon’s diagonal shot flashed just inches wide of Longford’s far post.

The Town almost snatched a dramatic equaliser with the last attack of the game when Town keeper Kelly joined the attack and rose highest to connect with McGlade’s corner, but his header agonisingly went inches wide.

[caption id="attachment_19247" align="aligncenter" width="1859"] Picture from droghedaunited.ie[/caption]

TEAM LINE-UPS

Drogheda United (4-2-3-1): Skinner, Deasy, Kelly, Gallagher, Kane, Purdy, Hyland, McCaffrey (Dillon 75 mins), Hondermarck, Doyle (Adeyemo 92 mins), Lyons.

Longford Town (4-4-2): Kelly, Chambers, McDonnell, O’Reilly, Noack-Hofmann, Hopkins (Ryan 94 mins), Dervin, Zambra (O’Neill 83 mins), McGlade, Dillon, Doyle.

MATCH PHOTOS BY KEN KEENAN

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