Fingal Independent

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Plucky Portmarnock take step closer to relegation

Soccer: Leinster Senior League, Sen Div Sunday: Portmarnock 0 Maynooth Uni Town 3

Portmarnock's hopes of avoiding the drop took another blow on Sunday as they were beating by title hopefuls Maynooth University Town.

Portmarnock have won just three of their 17 games this season and with 10 remaining new manager Simon Cash has a monumental challenge on his hands to try and keep the Paddy's Hill outfit in the top division.

The Fingal outfit had shown plenty of promise in Cash's first two game in charge as they lost only narrowly to both Liffey Wanderers and Ballymun United in two previous outings.

However, with games running out it was time to start turning those good performances into points, beginning with this tough-looking game hosting outside title hopefuls Maynooth University Town.

Porto began the game well, with Darragh Keating and Alex Boylan seeing plenty of the ball in midfield early on. However, despite enjoying lots of possession Cash's side struggled to create any clear-cut chances as they broke down time after time in the final third of the pitch.

The students were seemingly content to sit back and hit Porto on the counter and in truth they looked comfortable during the first half-hour.

Jackson Ryan has been in good form this season for Maynooth and it was he who broke the deadlock 10 minutes before the interval as he ghosted in unmarked at the back post to tap home the game's opening goal.

That was a huge blow for Porto who had enjoyed the majority of possession up until that point but now found themselves a goal down with half-time fast approaching.

Ryan almost doubled his side's lead just before the break with a low shot towards goal, but Brian Kane got down well in the home goal to ensure the score remained 1-0 to the visitors at the break.

The second half saw Portmarnock continue to enjoy the majority of possession, but time and time again the final ball was just not quite good enough as the visitors stood firm at the back.

Portmarnock's best chance of the second half fell to Chris Burgess with 20 minutes remaining as he struck a shot from just inside the box which narrowly failed to hit the target.

With time running out the home side knew they had to take risks to try and find an equaliser and in doing so they left big holes at the back.

Those holes were exploited by a clever Maynooth side who broke at pace to double their advantage with just five minutes left. 

Darragh Deegan supplied the finishing touch for the visitors after a pinpoint cross from Jackson Page.

With just seconds remaining Deegan struck again to leave a rather harsh-looking complexion on the scoreline as Maynooth went 3-0 ahead.

Shortly afterwards the full-time whistle was blown as Porto took another step closer to the relegation trapdoor.

Portmarnock: Brian Kane, Darragh Browne, John Clancy, Gareth Whelan, David Kilcommins, Alex Boylan, Darragh Keating, Sam Carroll, Alan Shaughnessy, Graham Rusk, Chris Burgess.

Fingal Independent