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  • Soccer

Nenagh Celtic set out title credentials

Thursday, 6th August, 2020 11:07am
Nenagh Celtic set out title credentials
Nenagh Celtic set out title credentials

SOCCER: North Tipperary & District League Review




By Padraig Ryan


The 2020 North Tipperary & District League season kicked off last weekend with Nenagh Celtic making their intentions on retaining the premier division title clear on day one with a 5-1 win over Killavilla United.

Mark Walsh opened the scoring with a header before Szymon Popiela converted from the penalty spot to leave the half time score at 2-0. The game continued in similar fashion after the break with Celtic dominating and Brian Mitchell banging a second half hat trick to make sure of all three points. Villa got a late consolation goal from a penalty but the day was Celtics, a clear statement of intent delivered by the reigning Premier Division champions.

Ballymackey produced the weekends biggest upset with a stunning 3-0 win over last season’s title challengers Borroway Rovers. Darragh McDonnell and Thomas Sheppard netted in an impressive opening half for the Ballinree side, before Aiden White added a third in the second half to secure the win.

Rovers are depleted at the moment with a series of injuries affecting their season start, but take nothing from Ger Hogan’s Ballymackey side who will take great confidence from this excellent performance and are already the team to watch in this season’s top division.

Lough Derg and Moneygall met last Friday in the season opener with a back and forth battle ending eventually in a 3-3 draw. Derg enjoyed a miserable start to life in the Premier division, finding themselves 2-0 down inside the opening fifteen minutes with Moneygall’s goals coming from Matthew Longe and Joe Callaghan.

Lee Mowat pulled one back for John Haye’s young side before a crucial penalty save from Oisin Conacur kept the deficit at the minimum. With 75 minutes on the clock Jack O’Mahoney scored a long range equaliser for Derg but Moneygall were not ready to lie down and Conor Longe scored a beautiful free kick to put Eddie Brady’s side back in front with minutes left to play. A dramatic finish ensued and deep into injury time a free kick dropped in the box with Kieran Larkin the quickest to react, rifling home the equaliser to leave the full the score at 3-3.

A good performance from Moneygall who will disgusted at letting a two-goal lead slip while Lough Derg will be delighted to have shown that they have the battling qualities to match their footballing ability.

Elsewhere, Cloughjordan got off the mark recording a 3-0 win over Thurles Town.


Division 1

Rearcross got their season off to an excellent start with a 3-1 away win over Sallypark. James Deegan netted twice for Eamonn Devitts side with top striker Michael O’Gorman adding the third. Eoin Ryan has scored for Sallypark to make it 2-1 but they are still looking for a way to convert their impressive cup runs into league victories. 

Elsewhere, Clodiagh Rangers got their season off to a winning start with a 3-1 victory at home to Portumna Town. Clodiagh led 2-1 at the break thanks to strikes from TJ Butler and John Ryan and they would have had another but for a saved penalty. Daniel Moloney scored Clodiaghs third in the second half to make the win a little more convincing and they will be looking forward to taking on Rearcross in what already looks a decisive encounter.

Borrisokane secured a narrow 1-0 win over fellow promoted side Arra Rovers on Saturday. Brian Donnelly scored from the penalty spot on the half hour mark and Borrisokane managed to keep Arra out at the other end.

A solid win for Borrisokane and they will be delighted to get their first three points of a promising season, while Arra can take heart from their showing here and will cause plenty of problems this seasons.


Division 2

Holycross FC cemented their place as league favourites with a 5-0 away over Templetuohy. Elsewhere, Moneygall ‘B’ beat Ballymackey ‘B’ 6-2 and Silvermines fell to a 5-2 loss to neighbours Birdhill while Clodiagh Rangers ‘B’ secured all three points in a thrilling 6-4 win over Nenagh Celtic ‘B’. 


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