MUCFP v Athlone Town 3rd September 2016

The “Partners” return to winning ways at home to Athlone Town.

The MonUtd/Cavan U17 League of Ireland team who defeated Athlone Town 2 : 1 at Gortakeegan on Sat' last.The goals were two fantastic free kicks from dead ball expert and centrral defender Adam O' Connor.Back L to R : Luke Donohoe,Ify Nzewi,Daniel Murdock,Cameron Dowd,Dean Connolly(Cpt).Adam O' Connor.Front L to R:Lorcan Murnaghan,Shane Duffy,Jerome Abekya,Seosamh Sheerin,Karl Cosgrove.
The MonUtd/Cavan U17 League of Ireland team who defeated Athlone Town 2 : 1 at Gortakeegan on Sat’ last.The goals were two fantastic free kicks from dead ball expert and centrral defender Adam O’ Connor.Back L to R : Luke Donohoe,Ify Nzewi,Daniel Murdock,Cameron Dowd,Dean Connolly(Cpt).Adam O’ Connor.Front L to R:Lorcan Murnaghan,Shane Duffy,Jerome Abekya,Seosamh Sheerin,Karl Cosgrove.

A wet and wintery Gortakeegan in Monaghan was the venue on Saturday for the clash of the Monaghan United / Cavan Football Partnership and Athlone Town FC in the Northern section of the SSE Airtricity Under 17 National League. An emotional minutes silence was observed for the victims of the sad events in Ballyjamesduff, County Cavan, the home town of some of the “Partners” players, before the match got underway.

.
The visiting Athlone side, lying a few places above the hosts in the League, set the early pace and should have opened the scoring within the 1st minute when the “Partners” conceded a corner. The ball was delivered at pace and was narrowly headed wide of Daniel Murdock’s goal by Jonny Moloney who’d come forward from his defensive roll. Again the visitors had the “Partners” in trouble in the 7th minute, this time from a free-kick which Paul Costello headed straight at Murdock. In the 14th minute Athlone’s Conor Layng cut inside Cameron Dowd and let fly but his effort was always rising over Murdock’s crossbar. The home side began to get into the game more after this and could have taken the lead from a Karl Cosgrove corner that Lorcan Murnaghan just narrowly failed to connect his head to and the chance was gone. Shane Duffy released Ify Nzewi in the 21st minute but he was flagged off-side by the linesman. Athlone fashioned a shooting opportunity in the 29th minute when Paddy Gantly and Joe Carmody combining inside the “Partners” area but Murdock was on hand to smother Gantly’s well struck effort. Carmody saw his effort fly passed an upright 5 minutes later. The “Partners” were the next to threaten to open the scoring when Jerome Abekamwale and Cosgrove linked up with the latter’s shot grazing Matthew Rowden’s bar. For the remainder of the half the “Partners” had the majority of possession with Seosamh Sheerin testing Rowden from distance in the 41st minute.

Half Time Monaghan United / Cavan FP 0 Athlone Town 0.
P1460620

Again the home team were slow to start the second half as they had done the first and nearly paid the price for this in the 49th minute when a move involving Oisin O’Reilly, Costello and Oran Murphy resulted in Murphy having a shot that Murdock had to be alert to deal with. Again after a slow start the “Partners” picked up the pace and Nzewi smashed a shot wide of Rowden’s post. Carmody rattled Murdock’s crossbar in the 60th minute when he should have done better.P1460566

Aaron Reilly was introduced for Sheerin in the 65th minute and within 2 minutes he’d made an impact, being brought down 5 yards from the Athlone penalty area. Adam O’Connor strode forward from the back and floated a delightful ball over the Athlone wall and into Rowden’s top corner giving the Keeper no chance. The score didn’t remain that way for long as the visitors levelled within 3 minutes after good approach work from Joe Dwyer had the “Partners” defence in trouble and Carmody applied the finish. Cianan Kelly replaced Duffy shortly after this to add fresh legs in midfield and this made a difference as the hosts began to dominate possession again. Reilly was proving to be a real thorn in the Athlone defence’s side with his clever movement and in the 79th minute Jerome and Dean Connolly combined to set him free but his run was halted just outside the penalty area.

.

Again O’Connor came forward and again he managed to get the ball over the Athlone wall and beyond Rowden’s reach to regain the lead for the “Partners”. Callum Ross-Lynch replaced the tiring Nzewi in the 85th minute and should have extended the lead when he rounded Rowden only to see his shot cleared off the line by Nathan Poland.
Full Time Monaghan United / Cavan FP 2 Athlone Town FC 1.

P1460606    P1460618
Team: Daniel Murdock, Lorcan Murnaghan, Karl Cosgrove, Cameron Dowd, Luke Donohoe, Adam O’Connor, Dean Connolly, Shane Duffy, Jerome Abekamwale, Seosamh Sheerin and Ify Nzewi.
Substitutes Used: Aaron Reilly for Sheerin, Cianan Kelly for Duffy and Callum Ross-Lynch for Nzewi.
Unused Substitutes: Luke Molloy, Jordan Corraway, Luke Perkins, Lewis Gibson and Dylan McMullan.
Next up for the “Partners” is an away trip to Sligo to play the “Bit O’Red” on Saturday at 2pm in the Showgrounds in Sligo Town.