Porto knock out Pat's with late flourish
Charlie Cahill Cup: Portmarnock 2 St Patrick's CY 1
Goals from Noel McGinty and Chris Burgess helped Portmarnock to a come-from-behind victory over St Patrick's CYFC at Paddy's Hill on Sunday.
On a cold, wet morning in north Dublin both sides looked sluggish early on in this Charlie Cahill Cup fixture. Passes went astray and there was little in the way of goalmouth action as both teams struggled to shake off the rust gathered from the Christmas break.
Porto looked the more likely of the two sides to break the deadlock, but they lacked their usual cutting edge in front of goal as chances were wasted.
The best chance of the opening half probably fell to Burgess who was sent clear by midfielder McGinty. Burgess took a touch, but the Pats goalkeeper was quickly off his line to snuff out the opportunity.
Just before the break Sam O'Connor tried a speculative shot from distance which almost caught out the visiting goalkeeper, but his effort just cleared the crossbar to ensure the score remained 0-0 as both sides went in at half-time.
St Pat's had the first big chance of the second half when their centre-forward broke the offside trap before blazing wide when through on goal.
That chance served as a bit of a wake-up call for Porto who began to assert their dominance on the game, with Ray Whelehan and McGinty winning plenty of ball in the middle of the pitch. However, despite enjoying their best spell of the match, the home side fell behind with 25 minutes remaining when the visitors were awarded a penalty.
Full back Jamie McGlynn was adjudged to have fouled the Pat's striker in the box and the referee pointed to the spot.
The visitors' spot kick taker made no mistake as the penalty was stroked home to give the visitors a 1-0 lead.
Portmarnock responded well and produced some excellent football in the build-up to the equaliser which arrived with 20 minutes remaining.
Barry Caulfield was beginning to see plenty of the ball now and it was his perfectly placed cross which was controlled by Burgess before being buried into the back of the net.
The equaliser was no more than Porto deserved and with Pat's on the rack the home side looked for the winner.
The second goal for Portmarnock came just 13 minutes from the end, with Caulfield again providing a crucial contribution.
He floated in a lovely corner which was headed against the post by the unlucky Burgess. However, the ball came back out to McGinty who kept his composure before volleying into the net for what turned out to be the winning goal.
Porto should have added to their tally late on when substitute Raoui Lassoued missed after going one-on-one with the Pat's keeper, but all in all this was a good morning's work from Willie O'Leary's side ahead of a Fingal derby against Swords Celtic this week.
Portmarnock: Brian Kane, Jamie McGlynn, Sean Murphy, Gareth Whelan, Robert Gaul, Barry Caulfield, Ray Whelehan, Noel McGinty, Phillip Rusk (Raoui Lassoued), Sam O'Connor, Chris Burgess.