SHELBOURNE 1 (Aidan Keena pen)
BOHEMIANS 1 (Robert Dunne)
Report and Picture courtesy of Herald Striker
By Ciaran Brennan
Rudd Dokter must be quite a pleased man. The FAI’s High Performance Director has just overseen the first weekend of competition in his new baby project, the League of Ireland’s under-17 League.
Dokter spotted a bump in the pathway of player development, between the Schoolboy Leagues and the now well established LoI Under-19 League. And so as part of his vision for the future of Irish soccer, the under-17 League was born.
And a very bright start it has been too. The goals have flown in at many venues, and if this tie at the AUL Complex is anything to go by, there certainly is no shortage of good young talent around. A fine pitch, sunny conditions, and, under the watchful eye if Rudd Dokter himself, the players responded with some excellent football throughout.
Shelbourne pressed hard in the early minutes. Bohemians keeper Eoghan Maloney did well to save at the feet of Jason Grouse and, a minute later they survived another dangerous attack from the left.
But on five minutes,with their first meaningful raid into Shels territory, the visitors took the lead. The highly skilled Aidan Doyle, Bohs right winger, jinked to make room for an excellent cross to Robert Dunne, who made no mistake with a powerful header to the net.
The goal lifted Bohs and for the rest of the half they had most of the possession and played some great football. Dunne had the Shels defence in trouble every time he got the ball to his feet.
Cian Flynn likewise down the left. Stephen Morley and Aaron Townley were manufacturing the bullets in midfield. While at the back, their elegant team captain Warren O’Hora seemed to have all the time in the world for his defensive interventions and his many clever attacking contributions.
Shelbourne’s cause wasn’t helped when, on the half hour mark, team captain Michael Murphy was sent off. Murphy, a solid performer to then, saw red when his overstretched tackle effort made a two footed contact with Doyle, giving referee Tom Dempsey an easy opportunity to produce the card.
As Boh continued to produce the better football and dominate possession it was difficult to see Shelbourne getting anything from the game at this point.
But with the half time team talk ringing in their ears Shels played with a higher tempo early in the second half and pressed hard for the equaliser. Cian Gilson went just over with a header from a corner and just after that Shels were awarded a penalty. Centre forward Aidan Keena beat the Bohs defence chasing a long ball from inside his own half and was taken down by Maloney.
The Shelbourne bench wanted red but ref Dempsey produced the yellow card and pointed to the spot. . Keena brushed himself down and slotted the kick to Maloney’s right to draw the home team level. That score heralded the most exciting spell of a very good game as both sides went in search of the winner.
Shels keeper Ryan O’Neill touched a Stephen Nolan header onto the post while at the other end Calum Brammell swept a shot from the right just wide. Shelbourne can be commended for their battling efforts to the finish but Bohs will know that this was a game which should have been won.
Shelbourne: Ryan O’Neill, Tristan Moran (Jonathan Anene), Leo Tang (Eric Devereux), Sean Trimblr, Cian Gilson, Jamie Lennon, Jason Grouse, Michael Murphy, Aidan Keena (Adrian Pastuska), Callum Brammell, Sean Cronin.
Substitutes not used: Conor Lynam, Kelan Gaffney, Nathan Doyle, Jordan Connell
Bohemians: Eoghan Maloney, Flavio Markv, Eoin Doyle, Lee Rock, Warren O’Hora, Stephen Morley, Adam Doyle, Robert Dunne, Cian Flynn, Aaron Townley, Stephen Nolan. Subs. Gary Dunne, Dylan Scully, Jordan Maguire, Conor Cummins, Gabriel Aghinith, Paul McCarthy.
NEXT GAME: DERRY CITY v SHELBOURNE : Sat, Aug 18, Venue: TBC. Kick-Off 2.00pm
To see all fixtures and results, clickloi17 Fixtures & Results
To see the League Table. clickloi17 League Table