Shelbourne 0-0 Longford Town
Nine man Shelbourne held out for a scoreless draw against Longford in Tolka Park last Friday night in the SSE Airtricity League First Division clash. James O'Brien saw red for the North Dublin club on 42 minutes for a reckless challenge on Dylan McGlade. David O'Leary was then given a straight red in the 57th minute for a dangerous, two footed tackle on Stephen Walsh. Even with the numerical advantage for the majority of the second half, Longford failed to capitalise in what was a tough game for both sides.
Longford had many chances in the first half, in particular with Kevin O'Connor and Kealan Dillon. Their shots from distance were easily gathered by Dean Delany in the Shels goal. Dylan McGlade was an ever constant threat on the left wing during the game, going by 2 men and cutting inside to cross. The final ball however, either lacked precision at times or had nobody on the end to receive it. David O'Leary hit a volley from 30 yards that just skimmed over Town keeper Paul Skinner's crossbar. With the sending off of O'Brien just before the end of the first half, Town began to control possession.
The second half was full of incidents and chances. Shels were reduced to 9 men when O'Leary saw red after a horrendous challenge on Town defender Stephen Walsh. After the sending off, Shels allowed Longford a lot more time on the ball to play it out from the back. Longfords biggest chance of the game came in the 61st minute when Dylan McGlade cut inside and hit the underside of the crossbar from 30 yards. Dean Zambra had a number of chances also but again, Delany in the Shels goal kept Longford out. Aidan Friel was lively getting forward as was his co-full back Tristan Noack-Hofmann who has been extremely impressive so far this season. Both began to push forward from the full back position and were getting in crosses. In the 75th minute, Noack-Hofmann beat his man again, this time cutting inside, he played it to Jake Kelly in the box who's shot was saved, it rebounded back towards substitute Karl Chambers who had his effort cleared off the line by Dylan Prendergast. Towns final chance came from a corner but Stephen Walsh's header was over the bar.
In the last game before the 2 week, Longford had to settle for a share of the spoils in Tolka. We go into the break now still behind Cabinteely in 4th but with Shels only 1 point behind us in 6th. Although it was not the result we hoped for, Town fans can take some positives in that Gary Cronin had the team playing a lot more openly. We passed it and retained possession quite well and Tristan Noack-Hofmann seems to be getting better and better.
Longford Town Line-up: Paul Skinner, Aidan Friel, Stephen Walsh, Daniel O'Reilly, Tristan Noack-Hofmann, Dylan McGlade, Dean Zambra, Kevin O'Connor (Capt), Kealan Dillon, Jake Kelly, Gavin Boyne.
Subs: Jack Brady, Niall Fagan, Aodh Dervin, Dan Beya, Rhys Gorman, Noel Haverty, Karl Chambers (replaced Gavin Boyne).
Shelbourne Line-up: Dean Delany, Adam O'Connor, Alan Byrne, Dylan Prendergast, Niall Lanigan, Mark Hughes, Adam Evans, David O'Leary, Dylan Kavanagh, James O'Brien, James English.
Subs: Jamie Quinn, Jack Tuite (replaced Niall Lanigan), Reece McEnteer (replaced Dylan Kavanagh), Aaron Ashe (replaced James English), Dylan Grimes, Jackson Ryan, Dayle Rooney.
Cards: Straight Red – O'Brien (Shelbourne), Straight Red – O'Leary (Shelbourne)
LTFC.ie Man of the Match: Tristan Noack-Hofmann