Relegated Swords raise their spirits with a rare success
Soccer, Senior Div Sunday: Malahide United 1 Swords Celtic 3
Swords Celtic's relegation back to Senior 1 Sunday may have been confirmed the previous weekend, but to their credit they are exiting the top flight with a bang rather than a whimper if this excellent away victory in Malahide is anything to go by.
Brendan Kennedy's young Swords side have had a real baptism of fire at this level, but they have shown glimpses of their potential and you suspect that should they earn promotion next season they will be much better equipped to deal with all Senior Sunday has to throw at them.
Swords' final away game in Senior Sunday was a tough challenge against local rivals Malahide who have been in sparkling form in recent months.
A Charlie Cahill Cup triumph, as well as a run of form which saw them lose just two games in 12 matches, ensured Malahide were on course for another top-five finish this season in what can be considered a successful debut season for manager Ger Coughlan.
Swords began well, however, with Jack McGlade and Eoin Jones seeing plenty of the ball.
Swords deservedly took the lead via the penalty spot after 20 minutes after Gavin Smith was hauled down in the area by a defender. Jonathan Lyons assumed responsibility and made no mistake from the spot as he sent the goalkeeper the wrong way to put the visitors ahead.
With half an hour on the clock Swords doubled their lead thanks to a wonderful finish from talented teenager McGlade. Tom McCarthy strode forward before playing in McGlade who shot first time to the roof of the net.
The concession of that second goal seemed to wake the home side up and they went close to halving the deficit when Darren Craven shot just wide after being put through on goal by Ciaran McGahon.
However, it was the visitors who had the final say of the first half as the instrumental McGlade opened up the Malahide defence, played in Jones down the left and the midfielder looked up before squaring to Andrew Bermingham who slotted home.
Malahide came into the game a bit more after the break and again went close through Jordi Ebanda who forced a great save from Stephen Trimble.
With time running out Malahide grabbed a consolation goal thanks to a fine finish from Ebanda, but it was Swords who claimed the bragging rights.
Swords Celtic: Stephen Trimble, Adam Bolton, Stephen Blake, Sean Kelly, Graham Duff, Andrew Bermingham (Gavin Logan), Eoin Jones, Jonathan Lyons (Stephen Breen), Jack McGlade, Tom McCarthy (Evan Kelly), Gavin Smith (Anthony Burke).