At long last we put Finn Harps to the sword. It should have been more than 3-1 but the three points were vital for flagging confidence and helped us leapfrog Waterford who slumped to a 1-0 defeat to Mervue. So we're now in second place and have a free weekend ahead to make sure that we've no more slip ups. The week after next, we face Cobh at home.
The game was played on a dark wet night but that didn't stop some delightful football from some of our younger players with Mulhall, Ebbe and Josh O'Hanlon being particularly effective. Jamie Mulhall made the first goal for Dean Ebbe after about 20 minutes and it was young Mulhall again who provided the 3rd for Josh O'Hanlon to wrap things up on 67 minutes. As one maths genius noted, their combined age didn't even reach that of substitute Keith Gillespie. Rhys Gorman scored the second goal which was judged to have crossed the line. Finn Harps scored with ten minutes remaining but really, a free out should have awarded beforehand for blatant pushing. However the ref was intent on letting play develop as much as possible all night and generally acquitted himself well.
As well as some delightful moves, there were some awful misses by both teams too. Incredibly the ever accurate David O'Sullivan twice pulled shots a half a centimetre wide while Gary Shaw also should have had his name on the scoresheet. At three nil up, we then seemed to invite our hosts to have a go and left many in the stand with unnecessary frayed nerves. The Drogheda manager was once again an interested spectator but on Saturday night's display, he won't have too many worries as he heads up to Finn Park to book his side's place in the Cup semi finals. At half time, in the Clubhouse he was in jovial and animated conversation with our own legend Alan Kirby.
Overall it was a satisfying result on a lousy night. The pitch with its new circular mowing pattern looked in superb condition and though not too many travelled down from Donegal. Maybe they were saving their voices for the Cup tie against the Drogs.
PLAYER OF THE MONTH/AUGUST
Marty Stapleton was on hand to present our number one Chris Bennion with his trophy for being Player of the Month for August. For many months, the big man has been a bit of an unsung hero pulling off some truly incredible saves when goals seemed certain. In the Cup game against Drogheda, he was particularly busy and aftewards many of the travelling fans were raving about him. But aprt from that game, Chris well deserved his award and has been often nominated for several months already this season. There's only award left now, the September one which will be presented by Padraig Connolly , a supporter who needs no introduction.
YOUNG TALENT ON SHOW
This coming week end the talented U19s take on a much fancied Wexford Youths outfit. Wexford are managed by the colourful Mick Wallace who has worked wonders for the beautiful game down in the sunny south east. It'll be a game not to be missed according to all who have seen both teams in action so far.
Congrats to Brian McCarthy on the birth of his first baby daughter and a welcome sister to the two boys who are mightily impressed. Though he sat out Saturday night's game on the bench, he seemed to have a wide grin right throughout the game. Now we know why...he wasn't on nappy duty. Sammo and Kirbs will be well able to provide any information on that particular chore, should Macker want any.
In the match programme for the international game against Sweden last Friday night, there were 11 tributes to various people associated with soccer in Ireland, from refs to players and managers. Among them was a past Longford Town goalkeeping legend, Kevin Bount. However the tribute writer mentioned Dundalk, Shelbourne, Transport and Cork Celtic as former clubs but omitted us for whatever reason.
SUPPORTERS' CLUB RAFFLE
With the draw just about a month away, you wouldn't want to forget about buying a ticket or two for the raffle. For a mere two euro, you're in with a magnificient chance to win a Kane's travel voucher to the value of €1000 with second prize being half of that. Now that autumn has arrived with its darkening evenings and a chill in the air, a week away in the sun would banish those dreary dark evenings. And for €2, you can't go wrong.