Cup win can be springboard for success, says Caulfield
Cork City 2 Dundalk 0
Published 29/02/2016 | 02:30
Cork City manager John Caulfield is hoping that Saturday's President's Cup win over Dundalk can lead to bigger and better things this season.
Goals from Gavan Holohan and Sean Maguire saw the Leesiders register their first victory over Stephen Kenny's side since 2012 - a run stretching back ten games.
"You had people saying that we had never beaten Dundalk but I wasn't really wound up about that to be honest," said the City boss afterwards.
"We came from nowhere in 2014 and ran them close but last year they raised the bar and we've had to rejig things a bit.
"I'm not getting carried away though. It's the President's Cup and there's still a lot of things to do but it's a good indicator and it shows that if we gel, we can push Dundalk."
Caulfield named a starting XI that included seven new faces, with Maguire, former St Patrick's Athletic midfielder Greg Bolger, and Eoghan O'Connell, who is loan from Celtic, all catching the eye.
The Rebels dictated the first half and they deservedly pulled ahead in the 20th minute. Gary Rogers did well to parry a Steven Dooley effort but Maguire's return ball across the face of goal was tucked into an empty net by Holohan.
The second arrived just after the hour mark when Maguire, who endured a frustrating loan spell with Dundalk last season, found space behind Sean Gannon to plant O'Connell's fine cross past Rogers.
"I wanted to see how the new lads would cope and where they were at," he said. "Down here you have to be consistent if you want to challenge for anything and the early indications are that the new lads will do fine.
"We need to get guys to settle in quickly because we need to start the league properly and try and stay up there. If you give Dundalk a head start and they start pulling away then that can make life very difficult."
Dundalk's miserable afternoon was compounded when Brian Gartland was sent off with ten minutes to play and Lilywhites boss Stephen Kenny admitted it was a rare off day for his side.
"We were deservedly beaten. I felt we were very, very slow out of the traps and a couple of players look like they have some work to do to get to where we need them to be," he said. "Cork were quite mobile around the midfield, played in our half and they created a lot of chances. We didn't get going really."
CORK CITY - McNulty; O'Connell, Bennett, Browne, Dunleavy; G Morrissey, Bolger; Turner, Holohan (Beattie 71), Dooley (Sheppard 76); Maguire (O'Sullivan 84).
DUNDALK - Rogers; Gannon (Mountney 62), Gartland, Boyle, Massey; Shields, O'Donnell; McEleney (Barrett 81), Finn, Horgan; Kilduff (McMillan 82).
REFEREE - G Kelly .