Saturday 25 May 2019

Ruthless Duleek eye Tully triumph

Tully Bookmakers Cup - Duleek 6 Glenmuir 0

A goal in the very first minute by Matthew Noone eased any nerves in the Duleek camp as the Premier Division side safely advanced to the quarter-finals in the Tully Bookmakers Cup last Saturday.

Opponents Glenmuir's solitary triumph in this competition came about back in 2009 when they too were a top-flight club, but the Dundalk side now ply their trade in Division 3 and were hoping on this occasion to cause a big upset against the 2013 Cup winners at the Tollstone.

Their chances became all the more difficult in those opening seconds as the very alert Noone got in behind the Glenmuir defence to open the scoring.

Despite being shell-shocked by that setback, Glenmuir managed to gather themselves and thereafter created a number of chances of their own, the most notable a goal-bound shot from John Byrne after four minutes which was expertly tipped away for a corner by Duleek keeper Mark Kelly.

Five minutes later Kelly was once again called into action when he rushed off his line to deny Liam Cunningham, whose effort went narrowly wide.

The Dundalk outfit were punished for not converting the chances that came their way as Duleek went 2-0 up in the 10th minute when former amateur international Barry Kavanagh made a great run before unselfishly setting up James Guilfoyle for an easy tap-in, with Glenmuir keeper David McKenna anticipating a shot from the striker.

Glenmuir managed to keep the score at 2-0 for the remainder of the half, but the second period resumed with the home side still in control and their grip of the possession paid off in the 68th minute with a superb team goal, with Kavanagh tapping in a Robbie Daly cross after a great move involving Sean Kennedy and Guilfoyle.

At that point Duleek introduced three substitutes and each of them got on the scoresheet, beginning with John Broderick who made no mistake in a one-to-one situation following a neat pass by Gareth Toal.

That was followed by a fine solo effort from Cormac McGroggan, and John Horan rounded off the scoring with just two minutes remaining to make it 6-0 and secure a quarter-final place at home to Trim Celtic.

However, Duleek will park that particular fixture for now as they concentrate on securing the Premier Division status. A draw in their penultimate fixture at home to bottom-of-the-table Carrick Rovers next Sunday would be enough to send Carrick down, but a win for the Monaghan outfit would leave Duleek needing a victory from their one remaining league match.

Drogheda Independent