Sport League of Ireland

Sunday 17 December 2017

FAI Cup match reports: Catch-up with all the action from around the country

Dundalk's Kurtis Byrne, third from right, is congratulated by team-mates after scoring his side's third goal. FAI Senior Cup, Second Round, Dundalk v Shelbourne. Oriel Park, Dundalk, Co. Louth. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE
Dundalk's Kurtis Byrne, third from right, is congratulated by team-mates after scoring his side's third goal. FAI Senior Cup, Second Round, Dundalk v Shelbourne. Oriel Park, Dundalk, Co. Louth. Picture credit: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE Newsdesk Newsdesk

It was a busy night in the second round of the FAI Cup tonight. Find all the night's match reports here.

Dundalk 5 Shelbourne 0

Dundalk continue to advance on all fronts with Stephen Kenny’s side making light work of Shelbourne in tonight’s FAI Cup second round tie at Oriel Park.

Speaking prior to the match, Shels manager Kevin Doherty described the league champions as a ‘machine’ and Dundalk showed their ruthless streak by punishing the Division One side for squandering a golden opportunity to draw first blood.

The chance in question arrived in the 11th minute when Alan O’Sullivan pounced on Paddy Barrett’s weak pass outside the Dundalk penalty area. The Shels centre forward found himself with just Gabriel Sava to beat but his effort drifted wide and any hopes of a shock went with it.

Fourteen minutes later, Doherty’s side found themselves two goals adrift. Centre back Ryan Robinson headed into his own net, leaving Greg Murray with no chance and the Shels goalkeeper was left helpless again when Jake Kelly’s pinpoint header, from a Richie Towell cross, found the bottom corner.

It was another set piece that led to the killer third goal in the 49th minute, Kurtis Byrne finishing off Horgan’s delivery.

Stephen Kenny used the occasion to utilise his squad and Ciaran O’Connor almost made an instant impression when he came off off the bench to see a ferocious drive fly just off target.

The fourth goal arrived with 20 minutes to play. O’Connor showed plenty of power to run Adam O’Connor in the inside left channel, drawing a foul from the Shels full-back and Towell made no mistake from the penalty spot.

O’Connor was also instrumental in the fifth, guiding a Sean Gannon cross to the far post for Ronan Finn to head home, taking Dundalk’s goal tally to 28 in their last eight games.


Galway United 1 North End United 0

Daragh Small

Jake Keegan struck the only goal as Galway United justified favouritism but only just got the better of North End United at Eamonn Deacy Park.

The Tribesmen were by far the better side but didn’t show it and the visitors from Wexford rarely troubled the Galway goalmouth apart from Paul Murphy's late chance of a leveller.

Keegan’s goal was the only high point in a poor half of football where they led 1-0 at the break but in truth neither side performed.

The American gave Galway the lead in the fourth minute with an audacious effort from what looked like an impossible angle.

Ryan Connolly played him in down the left and with goalkeeper Lee Walker all at sea, the American slotted form the left.

But Galway were flat for the rest of the half and they only had one more chance of note in the first 45 minutes. Just after the half-hour Connolly played in a delightful ball to the on-rushing Jason Molloy who sent his shot off the post and wide.

The Tribesmen could have gone behind were it not for some inspirational defending from Stephen Walsh. But outside of that there was very little by way of action and the hosts only led 1-0 at the break because of the strength of the opposition.

Enda Curran had his first opportunity of the night in the 54th minute. Gary Shanahan crossed from the right wing and Keegan rose to knock the ball down but his fellow striker who blazed wide.

Shane Dempsey had a couple of chance for North End but their best opportunity came from the boot of Jason Murphy. He sent in a rasping shot in the 65th minute that had Galway ’keeper Connor Gleeson beaten but Walsh came to the rescue.

Murphy had another effort minute later but that went just over the Gleeson’s crossbar.

Sam Oji missed a guilt-edged opportunity for Galway just before the end but it was a poor effort that summed up the night on the Dyke Road.


Bray Wanderers 3 Limerick 1

Chris Lyon’s quick-fire double sealed Wanderers’ passage into the last 16 of the FAI Cup.

In front of the smallest crowd of the season so far at the Carlisle Grounds, the striker hammered to the roof of the net in the 62nd minute after Peter McGlynn’s cut-back.

Moments later, Michael Barker teed up Luke Gallagher whose placed effort came off Tommy Holland’s legs and hit the post but no corner was awarded.

Then in the 65th minute, Lyons held off Paudie O’Connor’s attentions to delightfully dink the ball over Limerick’s teenager keeper Tommy Holland.

The Wicklow side took a seventh minute when skipper David Cassidy was left unmarked to volley in Graham Kelly’s free for his sixth of the campaign.

It only the second ever match in the competition between the two clubs, Bray should made grabbed a second moments later.

Played through by Kelly down the right channel, McGlynn was denied by 17-year-old custodian who bravely blocked at the expense of a corner.

But the Blue’s levelled on the quarter hour through Dean Clarke sixth goal of the season. He lost his marker to glance in a ten-yard header off Ian Turner’s corner.

The visitors should have taken the lead just 80 seconds into the second period.

Clarke surged form the halfway line along the left wing and played a slide-rule pass for Kieran Hanlon to beat the offside.

But with just Bray keeper Stephen McGuinness to beat, the young forward drag his effort low across the face of goal.


Tolka Rovers 2 Waterford United 1

John Fallon

NON-LEAGUE Tolka Rovers dumped First Division strugglers Waterford United out of the FAI Cup tonight.

Veteran midfielder Denis Moran fired the Leinster Senior League side ahead on 21 minutes by latching onto Adam Crowther’s through ball before beating Matt Connor.

Crowther was once again the creator for the hosts six minutes after the break when he squared for Mark Towley to tap home the second from close range.

Waterford’s top scorer Willie John Kiely pulled one back on 56 minutes before substitute Anthony McAlevey’s free-kick was pushed over by Craig Sexton.

However, the Roddy Collins-managed side were deservedly eliminated and they're left to concentrate on moving off the bottom of the table.

Townley and McAlevey were both sent off by referee Michael O’Connor in a frantic final eight minutes.


Bohemians 4 Firhouse Clover 1

Two goals in the space of six second-half minutes by Robbie Creevy were the highlight at Dalymount Park last night, as Bohemians progressed to the next round of the FAI Cup with a commanding victory against Firhouse Clover.

Two-time FAI Cup winner Jason Byrne broke the deadlock prior to the half-hour mark after his initial effort had rebounded off the crossbar, before a coolly-converted Luke Synnott penalty provided a timely boost to Firhouse with three minutes remaining in the opening period.

Bohs recovered from this set-back, however, and just nine minutes after the restart, Creevy unleashed an unstoppable shot into the bottom corner of the Firhouse goal.

The former UCD midfielder doubled his account on the hour mark when he poked home a pin-point Roberto Lopes cross from the right-flank, and on the stroke of 80 minutes, the alert Kealan Dillon completed an impressive second-half showing from the top-flight side by finishing off a goalmouth scramble.


Wexford Youth 0 Cork City 2

Goals towards the end of each half kept Cork City's cup dreams alive for despite a lacklustre performance they still disposed of a depleted Wexford Youths in this FAI Cup game played at Ferrycarrig Park tonight.

Cork City produced little in the way of quality football through the opening half hour being content to hold possession but showing little creativity up front. With the Youths playing five across midfield they managed to contain the visitors, limiting their shots on goal, but their attacking moments were left to quick counter attacks.

City in their opening attack saw Karl Sheppard head over from a fine Billy Dennehy fourth minute cross. Both sides were struggling but the Youths gave the visitors a fright when Eric Molloy pulled a right footed cross across goal and wide after fourteen minutes, while three minutes later they should have scored. Conor English played a freekick into the area that Dan Murphy seemed to misjudge leaving Aidan Keenan with a clear shot on goal but he kept his effort too close to keeper McNulty from a few meters out.

The visitors were looking quite sluggish in their play while the Youths looked comfortable in containing their opponents but still looking quite dangerous with their quick counter attacking football. But the all important goal opening goal arrived in the forty-sixth minute when Billy Dennehy having gained possession to the left edge of the area pulled a great left footed shot across keeper Doyle into the opposite corner of the net, making it 0-1 at the interval with his eighth goal of the season.

The lacklustre football continued through the opening stages of the second half with neither keeper been troubled until Eric Molloy had a fine fifty-eighth minute right footed shot well saved by McNulty.Neither side produced anything in the way of flowing football with City seemingly content to sit on their single goal lead until three minutes from the end when sub Mark O'Sullivan after his initial effort had been pushed away by keeper Doyle knocked the rebound into an unguarded net to make it 0-2.


Longford Town 1  Finn Harps  1

Despite playing for over 70 minutes with ten men, First Division leaders Finn Harps dug in tenaciously to bring Longford back to Ballybofey for a replay on Monday night.

The Donegal side also had manager Ollie Horgan sent to the stand in time added on at the finish.

In a hectic opening period, Longford were guilty of two dreadful misses; Harps had a player sent off, before then taking the lead.

Longford midfielder Kevin O’Connor put Kalem Simon through on goal on 12 minutes, only for the 18-year-old striker to make a hash of his attempted lob over keeper Ciaran Gallagher.

Minutes later, Simon did well to win the ball and square it to Mark Salmon, who was completely free in the area.

The Longford captain took his eye off the ball which got stuck between his feet and the chance was wasted.

Harps then had right wing-back Damien McNulty shown a straight red card on 19 minutes for a bruising tackle on Simon.

Three minutes later, though, they were ahead.

Tony McNamee put Gareth Harkin through in the inside-left channel and the striker finished emphatically, planting a crisp half-volley to the roof of the net.

Gallagher made a fine save from an O’Connor shot while Longford had a big shout for a penalty denied them when Harkin handled inside the area.

The Longford pressure told on 42 minutes, however. Harps failed to clear an Ayman Ben Mohamed corner and Stephen Rice stabbed home from six yards.

Longford dominated the second half, twice hitting the woodwork, but couldn’t find a way past Gallagher

Substitute David O’Sullivan saw his cross tipped onto the bar by Gallagher. O’Connor then rattled the crossbar with a 25-yard shot on 72 minutes.

Then, two minutes into added time, Gallagher made a terrific reaction save from O’Connor’s deflected shot before Harps’ boss Horgan was then sent to the stand for disputing a booking for Ciaran Coll.


Drogheda United 3-1 Cabinteely

Barry Landy

TWO SECOND half strikes from Adam Whelan and Sean Brennan secured Drogheda United’s safe passage in the FAI Cup as they saw off Cabinteely at United Park.

Drogheda dominated the early exchanges and took the lead inside ten minutes when goalkeeper Sean Hyland failed to hold Joe Gorman’s left wing cross and Thornton was there to poke in the ball in.

Sam McGowan and Lee Duffy went close for the home side before the First Division strugglers found an unlikely equaliser. Daniel Campbell sent in a deep cross from the right and the onrushing Jamie McGlynn sneaked in to side foot past the Drogheda keeper.

Cabinteely rarely threatened after that but dug in well, limiting the home side to half chances through Duffy and Jason Marks.

Drogheda edged in front on 72 minutes when Adam Whelan capitalised on an error to fire past Hyland and Sean Brennan wrapped it up in injury time as Drogheda made the last 16.


St Patrick's Athletic 2 Shamrock Rovers 1

THE FAI Cup used to be a source of agony for St Patrick’s Athletic, not a tonic to cure their misery.

Clearly, the relationship is changing. Seven days on from a miserable defeat to Dundalk which put an early end to their title hopes, Liam Buckley’s side brought the good vibes back to Inchicore.

The patrons enjoyed this deserved win over a Shamrock Rovers side that have now adopted the burden of a cup drought.

Since he assumed control in Dublin 24, Fenlon has been consistently reminded of the Hoops fans’ desperation to secure a trophy that last went their way in 1987. The ‘Drive for 25’ - a tally built during the era where they dominated the Blue Riband - must wait for another year.

Pat’s ended a 53 year wait last November, and they will hope this scalp revitalises their campaign.

They sensed they were on their way when Keith Fahey, a key player in that Aviva victory who duly packed his bags for Rovers, was withdrawn with 25 minutes remaining as the Hoops failed to make inroads on a two goal half-time deficit.

However, their delight was replaced by anxiety when his replacement Gary McCabe set up a grandstand finish with a stunning free kick. But Buckley’s restructured defence managed to hold out and restore their pride.

He’d needed to mix things up in the aftermath of a humbling lesson at the hands of Dundalk at this venue.

James Chambers moved from right full to replace the suspended Greg Bolger in midfield with Lee Desmond coming into the back four.

Meanwhile, Kenny Browne, who was dismissed for two first half yellows in that match, dropped to the bench with Jason McGuinness preferred.

The latter started shakily against his former club and nearly gifted them an opener when a dreadfully judged backpass was intercepted by MIkey Drennan with the former Aston Villa youth wasting the opportunity with his less favoured right foot.

When Ryan Brennan headed narrowly over from the next Hoops advance, it looked as though the Saints could be in for another sticky evening.

As the first half minutes ticked by, though, the locals steadied the nerves and realised they could have some joy if they showed composure in their own half against a visiting team that employed a high line early on and attempted to push forward.

From stringing a few passes together in their own territory, the Saints fashioned a break that culminated with an Aaron Greene effort being deflected wide for a corner which Sean Hoare turned goalwards only for Craig Hyland to produce a fine stop.

With Chambers helping to swing the pendulum, Buckley’s troops pressed up the park and forced a Rovers mistake just after the half hour mark that led to the deadlock breaker.

Pat Cregg was the guilty party, misjudging a crossfield pass after he found himself with nowhere to go when Gavin Brennan was forced to send the ball back in his direction.

Conan Byrne gratefully intercepted Cregg’s present and clinically opened his body to curl a right footer into the bottom corner from 20 yards.

Rovers heads bowed, and further pain followed as the hosts doubled their advantage in the 37th minute. Again, the Saints were given a helping hand as a McGuinness rose to meet a Byrne corner with a header that Hyland carelessly allowed to slip through his hands.

Fenlon marched into the away dressing room at half-time knowing that a dramatic improvement in concentration levels was necessary.

Ryan Brennan and Brandon Miele didn’t return for the resumption with Stephen McPhail and Kieran Marty Waters introduced. McPhail was seeking to start another cup journey seven years after he led Cardiff out in the FA Cup final at Wembley.

Those switches could have been made redundant from the restart when Greene was left one-on-one with Hyland who was on a mission to atone for earlier sloppiness and put his body in the way to block.

Rovers needed the action to switch to the other end, an area where they are light due to winter signing Danny North’s persistent fitness issues.

Drennan has shouldered the burden manfully for a 21-year-old short on senior experience and he would benefit from some help. He dragged a left footer into the side netting when finding space but it was all a bit predictable.

Fenlon searched for invention by springing McCabe in place of Fahey who applauded all sides of the ground as he left to abuse from the fans that used to adore him.

They continued to bang their drums, even when Greene was again thwarted by Hyland from close range.

The dangers of such profligacy was emphasised when McCabe stepped up to power a goal of the month contender into the roof of the net from distance. It was too little, too late for a Rovers group that will now have their own questions to answer.

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