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  • Soccer

Spoils shared as Villa and Celtic lose ground

Thursday, 3rd September, 2020 11:29am
Spoils shared as Villa and Celtic lose ground

Nenagh Celtic's Jimmy Hynes gets out ahead of Killavilla United's Robert Ryan. PHOTO: ODHRAN DUCIE

Spoils shared as Villa and Celtic lose ground

Nenagh Celtic's Jimmy Hynes gets out ahead of Killavilla United's Robert Ryan. PHOTO: ODHRAN DUCIE

 

By Gary Culbert

 

Killavilla United 2-2 Nenagh Celtic

Maurice Walsh turned in a performance of the highest quality to help Killavilla United rescue a point at home to Nenagh Celtic on Sunday.

On a calm, clear day in Villa Park, Nenagh Celtic’s tails were up pre-match when they learnt that the Roscrea outfit would be without front-men Shane Moloney and Paul Kirwan for this crucial clash. John Pio Fitzpatrick and young winger, Mark Dwyer, were the replacements for Villa, whilst Killian Fennell got a surprise start in place of Celtic’s Szymon Popiela.

As ever, Celtic started fast. Killian Fennell was played through by Jimmy Hynes after just one minute, Jason Ryan was out in a flash to quell the danger. Two minutes in, the scoring was opened out of nowhere when the energetic Ruari Murphy was played through down the left. He opened his body up and whipped a speculative, low strike inside the front post. Paul Walsh will be frustrated that the ball evaded his grasp and ended up in the net.

Killavilla were definite underdogs heading into this one, but the mix of energetic youth and experienced players such as Craig Phelan and Robbie Ryan was really paying dividends. Mark Dwyer particularly caught the eye in the first half he caused all sorts of problems down the right flank.

Prior to the water break, Killavilla were really dominating the game, but slowly the tide was turning. Mark Walsh was starting to show his class on the ball at the back for Celtic, but it was through their supporting full-back’s link-up with Jimmy Hynes that they looked most dangerous. It was during this period of Celtic dominance that the home side’s centre-back, Maurice Walsh, began to show his quality, denying the away side on multiple occasions.

The scores were level after a nothing ball from mid-way inside the Celtic half was sent over the Villa backline. Jimmy Hynes applied pressure to centre-back, Ian Treacy, who inadvertently lobbed the oncoming Jason Ryan.

Just before half-time, Killian Fennell thought he had put his side into the lead, only to see his right-footed curling shot - from his new right-wing position - bend just wide of the post.

In the second half, both sides had their moments, but in truth the game turned into a scrappy affair. However, a clear pattern was emerging down the right for Nenagh Celtic; Alan Kelly bombing on from right-back, creating an overload and Celtic re-took the lead thanks to this as Kelly provided the service, playing a defence splitting pass between the centre-back and full-back for Jimmy Hynes to run onto and there was no panic from the Nenagh striker, who pulled the ball back for substitute Dylan Armstrong, to run onto and made no mistake from seven yards.

Celtic looked home and dry, however, man-of-the-match Maurice Walsh would have the last word, topping off his dominant performance with a passage of play that Virgil van Dijk himself would be proud of. Walsh received the ball on the edge of his own box and went on a bursting run, playing a couple of one-two’s he was eventually fouled 25 yards out from goal. From the resulting free-kick, Tom Ahern struck a shot that was too hot to handle for Paul Walsh with Maurice Walsh forcing home the rebound, causing joyous scenes on the field which were matched by the wild honking of car horns by the Killavilla faithful as they earned a 2-2 draw.

Given the circumstances, Killavilla will be happy with a point. Celtic on the other hand will know that Ballymackey benefit most from the dropped points.

 

Thurles Town 2-1 Cloughjordan

Tommy Brophy scored his third brace in as many games to help secure all three points against Cloughjordan on Sunday.

An early penalty which he won himself, put Thurles in front. This is how the score-line remained at half-time, despite Dean O’Meara going close on two separate occasions.

Early in the second half, Brophy was again brought down in the box, this time he applied a Panenka style finish. Clough rallied and found a way back into the game through a penalty of their own. The keeper went the right way, but Dean O’Meara made certain that he would not be saving the shot.

Clough lost by the single goal in the end, which is becoming a common trend in their away games. They will really feel like they should have got a point in this one, having failed to convert several promising passages of play late on.

The win for Thurles moves them off the bottom, which Cloughjordan now occupy. Tommy Brophy was the difference on the day, he now leads the race for the Premier Division top goal scorer accolade.

 

Lough Derg 6-0 Moneygall

On a beautiful sunny day in Clarisford Park, Killaloe, the home side laid down a marker against a depleted Moneygall side, winning 6-0.

They were in front inside the opening minute when Jack O’Mahoney finished a fine Lee Mowat cross. After eight minutes the home side doubled their lead from a strike outside the box by David Cassidy, for his first goal of the season.

Moneygall steadied the ship until midway in the second half when the floodgates opened. Firstly, a fine strike from Leo Kerin nestled into the top corner. Next, it was substitute Finn Looney’s turn to get in on the scoring action. With 78 minutes played he made it 4-0 thanks to a Jack O’Mahoney assist. Looney provided the ammunition for the fifth and sixth goals, scored by Stevie McCarthy and Jack O’Mahoney, respectively.

John Hayes will be delighted with his young side’s ruthlessness in this match. Moneygall will be starting to look over their shoulder’s as they are now level on points with the relegation candidates.

Division 1

Fantastic first-half strikes from James Deegan and Michael O’Gorman were enough to secure all the points as Rearcross defeated Ardcroney 2-1 on Saturday night.

Jamie Heffernan pulled one back for the visitors in the first half, but they failed to capitalise on their second half pressure.

A tough loss for Ardcroney, but it does show that the young side are making progress. The three points ensure that Rearcross hold onto their automatic promotion place for now.

 

Division 1

Fantastic first-half strikes from James Deegan and Michael O’Gorman were enough to secure all the points as Rearcross defeated Ardcroney 2-1 on Saturday night.

Jamie Heffernan pulled one back for the visitors in the first half, but they failed to capitalise on their second half pressure.

A tough loss for Ardcroney, but it does show that the young side are making progress. The three points ensure that Rearcross hold onto their automatic promotion place for now.

 

When Borrisokane travelled to Newtown to face Arra Rovers, Mike Gavin had the away side in front after six minutes. It would have been worse for Arra Rovers had Darren Ahurn not saved a penalty before Ciaran Willis converted at the other end to draw the sides level, early in the second half. Callan Cotterell continued his assault on the Division 1 top scorers list, with a strike which put Arra in the driver’s seat. Borrisokane were level after an archetypal Padraig Quinn goal: a well struck volley from the edge of the box, following a clearance from the initial Borris’ free kick. Borrisokane dug deep, forcing in goals from two separate free kicks, thanks to pressure from Stephen D’Arcy and Brian Donnelly to win 4-2.

Clodiagh Rangers made the trip to Sallypark and came away with all three points thanks to a 6-3 win. Surprisingly, bottom of the table Sallypark took the lead through Mark O’Dwyer, but they could not repel the firepower that the runaway league-leaders had to offer, at half-time Sally’ were 3-1 down. Paul Hanley, Sam Van Dam and John Carew were on the scoresheet for the unbeaten visitors, whilst James Murray became the joint-top goal scorer in the division when he completed his hat-trick. Sallypark’s other two goals came in the second half through striker David Young and an own goal.

 

Division 2

The biggest shock of all three divisions last weekend was the defeat that Holycross suffered a 2-1 defeat at home to Templetouhy. The home side went in front through Ben Slattery, but a James Kavanagh brace in the second half secured all three points for the away side.

The result means that Holycross now have a lot of work to do in the second half of the season to secure promotion. Templetouhy now find themselves in a position where they can mount a real assault on the promotion place.

Clodiagh Rangers ‘B’ were held scoreless at half time when they travelled to play Nenagh Celtic ‘B. A Paul Ryan brace and goals from Dean Carew and Conor Ryan in the second half meant that the visitors left with all three points, despite a Celtic goal apiece from Craig Gleeson and Adam Morrissey.

Birdhill cemented their status as Division 2 title challengers, with a 2-1 win over Silvermines. Birdhill were ahead after twenty minutes and doubled their lead after the water break, with goals from Eoin Armshaw and Frank Troy’s third of the season gave the away side a two-goal lead at half-time. TJ Timmons gave the ‘Mines a lifeline with twenty minutes to play, however, Birdhill held firm to go three points off top spot, with a game in-hand.

Moneygall ‘B’ went 3-0 up at home to Ballymackey ‘B’, courtesy of a brace from in-form Billy Hayes and a Darragh Lee strike. After the half-time break, Warren Keneally started the Bally’ comeback, a strong run from right-back which finished with a near post strike. Two minutes later, Paidí Williams scored direct from a free kick. With 15 minutes remaining, Williams completed the come-back, converting from the penalty spot after Paddy Toogey was fouled. In the end, the points were shared in this six-goal thriller.

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