AFTER some disappointing results in recent games, everything came right for Fingal last Saturday as they sent one of the big Northern clubs crashing out of the Irish Senior Cup in the first round at ALSAA.
A failure to convert a multitude of chances has been the Swords club's Achilles' heel this season, but on this occasion they were so clinical that the second half was nothing more than a damage limitation exercise for a shellshocked Mossley from Belfast. Fingal set the tone for the afternoon when David Bane converted two corner opportunities in the opening 15 minutes, and after a quiet 10-minute spell the home side secured their place in round two with a further threegoal blitz in a seven-minute spell coming up to half-time. Shane Dempsey deflected Adrian Sweeney's centre into the goal to make it 3-0, Marcus O'Brien also scored from play and Simon McKeever took the Fingal tally to an incredible five with a drag-flick. Inevitably the goals dried up in the second half as Fingal took the opportunity to rest some key players and Mossley tightened up at the back, but Glen Shekleton piled further misery on the away side with a reverse hit to make it 6-0 before the Northern club grabbed a consolation with five minutes remaining.
The draw for round two has already been made and Fingal have been handed another tough home game against another of Ulster's best - namely Banbridge. That tie will take place at ALSAA on Saturday November 3rd, but Fingal coach John McInerney believes that on this form his team are capable of causing an upset. 'This result has been coming because we've been doing a lot of things right,' he said. 'I thought Mossley would be something like ourselves and that home advantage might tip the balance, but a lot of things we've been working on came off and it came a good bit easier than I thought it would. 'It's one of the first times we've taken the lead and that was important because we've been playing catch-up in a lot of games. 'We're at home in the next round against Banbridge, who are one of the top teams in the North, but we would not be without hope. I think we could do it.'
For now Fingal are concentrating on Leinster League business, with another double weekend of fixtures coming up -a trip to Three Rock Rovers on Saturday, followed by a home game against Corinthians 24 hours later. Both opponents are going well in the league and Fingal need to win at least one of those matches to drag themselves away from the foot of the table.