Friday 27 April 2018

Dennehy saga clouds Cork's build-up

Cork City's Billy Dennehy in action against David Cassidy of Bray Wanderers
Cork City's Billy Dennehy in action against David Cassidy of Bray Wanderers

John Fallon

Cork City will aim to put dressing-room division and KR Reykjavik's away goal advantage behind them when they resume Europa League action tonight (8.15 Irish time).

Of all the missions facing Ireland's European participants today, City's Icelandic task seems the most arduous.

Oskar Hauksson's equaliser in the 1-1 draw a week ago at Turner's Cross handed KR the initiative - and then two of Cork's players had to be separated at the final whistle.

Since then, John Caulfield's decision to axe one of those involved in the skirmish, Billy Dennehy, for the away leg has cast a shadow over City's preparations.

Dennehy, top scorer for City this season, has been instructed by Caulfield to explore other options but says he has no intention of quitting the Rebels.

That his brother Darren also misses the trip, supposedly due to injury, only deepens the intrigue.

Caulfield and defender Dan Murray presented a united front at last night's press conference, insisting all was well in the camp.

"We have identified areas where we think our players can cause them problems," said Caulfield. "There's a big opportunity there to win and meet Rosenborg in the next round. We could only need to score one goal but we can't be stupid about it."

Johnny Dunleavy will return to the starting line-up and captain the side.

CORK CITY (probable) - McNulty; Dunleavy, Bennett, Murray, Gaynor; Healy, Miller; Kearney, Buckley, Sheppard; O'Flynn.

Irish Independent

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