The travelling supporters of Finn Harps were over the moon following their one nil win on Saturday night last. And no one present could deny them their happy smiley faces as they headed back to the north west. This was the second time they took all three points from us at home, or as one happy traveller put it a “Donegal Catch”.
Since the game clashed with the John Joe Nevin fight and with last minute baling and wrapping being carried out, there was a fairly small crowd in attendance. However a good sized group did make the long journey down and when their drummers moved over to the stand for the second half, they helped create a marvellous atmosphere. Meanwhile Johnny Nevin had provided a small screen for those interested in Johnny's namesake going for gold.
But by the end of the night it was disappointment for both boxing and Town fans. We may have had the ball in the net , not once but twice but neither counted. The first was ruled offside and the second for a pretty tame shove. And yet, no one seemed overly bothered at half time. It seemed that if we could maintain our momentum, we'd surely break through. But the cups hadn't even been dried in the Clubhouse when word filtered through that our Donegal visitors had indeed made a catch. It wasn't a trout or a salmon in the net, more importantly they had the ball in the net after we had afforded them far too much space and time.
The goal seemed to inspire Finn Harps and they stuck solidly to defending their slender lead. And try as we could, we just lacked penetration up front. They got in our face and indeed had a chance late on from a break away attack to double their tally. We had chances to make up for those disallowed goals and really we shouldn't blame the ref or linesman. Our visitors showed a greater hunger as the game wore on and despite being a more skillful team, we failed to press home that superiority where it matters most, on the scoreboard.
Overall it was a frustrating night; we lost Haverty to a nasty injury and hopefully he'll make a speedy recovery. We need a fully fit squad as we head into the final round of games and to keep Waterford at bay. It was also frustrating for those fans who can't travel to away games as our form on the road is so much better than at home. But with Waterford being held by Athlone, the run is going to be a tense, tight affair with a good home support being more vital then ever.
MERVUE AT HOME
This saturday night we're at home again, with Mervue from Galway providing the opposition. Many might prefer if we were playing them in the west because of our poor home form. But surely,Saturday night should be a springing ground for a return to winning ways. The last two weeks have just produced one point, so this clash is vital to win if we're to maintain our already high standards. But again, it won't be easy. Forget that our opposition were beaten last week-end by SD Galway. What's more important is to remember that they scored four against us the last time we met. And yes, we managed to score five but by then they were reduced to nine men. So make no mistake about it, this again is to be tough going. And again what we really, really want and I could sing from the top of Johnny Nevin's taxi....we really, really want a win in front of more home supporters. Supporters are utterly vital as we face into round four.The football season might be kicking off in England, but supporting your home team is REAL sport.
PLAYER OF THE MONTH/ JULY
Thomas Crawley was the worthy winner of July's Player of the month. Thomas was presented with his trophy by Brendan Turner last Saturday night before the Harp's game. This monthly award by the Supporters' Club is in memory of of past player,President and great old friend, John Donlon.
All teams dream about having star strikers who can nick a goal to nick all three points. Our international set up could have done with one or two in form strikers way back at the start of the summer in Poland. I suppose we wouldn't turn one down ourselves either. But one group that doesn't want to see or hear them is the FAI in head office. Seemingly the pay up there for the ordinary mortals is very poor and they're threatening to strike for a just pay packet. Don't expect to see the CEO dipping into his deep pockets to help them out, that's only done to buy popularity on foreign shores.
CAR BOOT SALE
Once again, we'd like to thank the huge crowd who supported our Car Boot Sale on the August Bank Holiday Monday. The weather as usual smiled on us and a great day was had by all. The amount of stall holders was staggering and many hundreds of deals were done keeping every side happy. The event is attracting people from all over Ireland at this stage with some making very long drives to get a prime location very early in the morning. There were also a large amount of buyers who were en route to Dublin after a break in Mayo. Many also commented that the new bypass has made the location even handier than before which is all good news. A special word of thanks to the volunteers who were out very early and to those who were there late picking up all the litter. With time flying so quickly, our next one will be the Halloween break.
We'd like to wish the best of luck to our many young supporters who will be receiving their exam results this Wednesday.Good luck too to young Daryl Carrigy who travels overseas to fulfill his football dreams. Welcome home to Tom Kelly who spent a frustrating night in Italy last Saturday night following the Harps game on his high tech phone. Gerry and Mary Reilly are certainly doing their bit for international relations as they introduce all their visiting foreign friends to Flancare.
At the end of August we travel over to Athlone for our somewhat tame version of El Classico. A book of the same title has just been released by Bloomsbuty and priced €14.99. Its full title is El Classico:Barcelona v Real Madrid,Football's Greatest Rivalry. It's a must read for Jamie Coady and all overs of the Spanish game.
GOOD FOR YOU
According to one so called expert, watching the Olympics is good for you because sport enhances life. Well apart from the lucky few who could travel to London, most watched the Olympics from the couch or the high stool in a pub. The expert also said it helps us prepare for the highs and lows of ordinary everyday life. But surely being glued to the couch or stuck in a dark pub can't do much for the soul. Surely you'd be better off on a windy summer's evening in Flancare cheering on our very own.And if it's highs and lows you want, then as the Longford sporting philosopher said “ Flancare, no better place to enhance your life....”