Monday 20 November 2017

Magnificent Malahide men secure status

Paul Byrne

Malahide United's second victory in the space of four days confirmed that they will be playing Senior Sunday football next year once more.

There had been whispers of relegation around Malahide following two defeats in three games, but Pierce Walshe's men responded magnificently to that threat with two excellent performances, winning away to St Pats CYFC and this home game against Killester on Sunday afternoon.

They say a week is a long time in politics, but the same could equally be said for soccer, with Malahide zooming up the table and unbelievably eyeing a top-five finish which is achievable should they win their final two games.

Buoyed by a fantastic win away to St Pats CYFC on Wednesday evening, Malahide came into this game with confidence high and started the game brightly, with Ciaran McGahon and Darren Craven catching the eye early on.

Malahide were looking much the more dangerous side against a team who started the day in joint fourth spot. It came as no surprise when the home team opened the scoring, with Ciaran McGahon rising highest in the box to head home Gareth Craven's excellent free kick.

Malahide continued to push forward and probably should have doubled their lead on the half-hour mark, but Karl Melling's snap shot was comfortably saved by the visiting goalkeeper.

The home side did eventually double their lead just before half time as Ciaran McGahon slotted the ball pas the keeper after he was sent clear following good work from Darren Craven and Timmy Doherty.

It was a comfortable-looking 2-0 half time lead for Malahide, but the message coming from the home dressing room was to keep on pushing for a third goal to kill off the game.

Killester improved immeasurably in the second half and looked much more of a threat as they began to pin Malahide back. Dylan Fitzpatrick pulled off an excellent save with half an hour remaining to help ensure Malahide's two-goal cushion remained.

Killester continued to push but were struggling to break down a resolute home defence, and with just a minute remaining they were caught out as Timmy Doherty broke from his own half and ran through unchallenged before calmly slotting the ball past the goalkeeper to make it 3-0 and secure the points.

After the game Malahide manager Pierce Walsh was full of praise for his players.

'We actually didn't play as well today as we did the other night against St Pats CYFC, but we were dogged and determined and I felt we deserve that win today,' stated Pierce. '

To be honest we were magnificent against St Pats and I felt that when we won that game we were safe. Today was just the icing on the cake and it is so good not to be involved in the dogfight that is going on between a number of teams in the bottom half of the division.

'It is such a tough league and the fact that we were worried about relegation last week and are now looking for a top-five finish shows you just how close the division is.

"I have to give full credit to the lads as they could have let their heads drop a few weeks ago after we suffered a couple of bad defeats but they've picked themselves up and we are ending the season in style,' noted a delighted Pierce.

Fingal Independent

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