Shelbourne v Waterford United – REPORT

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SHELBOURNE 3 (Keegan 14′, A.McDonnell 63′, Coughlan 78′)

WATERFORD 1 (Whittle 75′)

Report courtesy of extratime.ie

by Niall Farrell

Shelbourne came back from last week’s 3-0 loss to Longford Town with a 3-1 win over Waterford United in a spirited performance on Friday night in Tolka Park.

A first half goal from Jordan Keegan put Shels ahead going into the break and Conor Murphy doubled their lead just after the hour mark. Conor Whittle brought the match to 2-1 for a brief period before Adam McDonnell closed the scoring.

Jordan Keegan’s opening goal wasn’t a spectacular one – but it came on the end of a fine Shelbourne move. Lee Murtagh flicked on a Conor Murphy cross from the left wing – for Keegan to finish easily at the far post.

Shels had the best of the ball in the first half – with the visitors largely restricted to scrappy half-chances. The Reds counter-attacked well, with Dylan Connolly and Conor Murphy making the most of some loose Waterford marking.

United, for their part, had a decent spell mid-way through the half after struggling to hold the ball – but then they found it hard to create any sort of chance.

They started the second half well, though, with substitute Philip Drohan’s menacing run ending in a shot into the side netting early in the half. Waterford had most of the ball in those early stages of the half, but again struggled to break through.

Blues ‘keeper Kevin Burns had to make a terrific save on 61 minutes to stop Conor Muphy scoring from close range – but three minutes later Burns was beaten, this time by Shels substitute Adam McDonnell. McDonnell headed the ball in from close range after a Conor Murphy cross left the Blues backline exposed.

Waterford finally made the best of a good spell of play after 75 minutes, when full-back Conor Whittle capitalised on Shelbourne’s failure to clear their lines. His shot was low and powerful and looked to have given the away side a way back into the match.

But Shelbourne’s attacking strength meant that the score didn’t stay 2-1 for long. Connolly broke down the wing and crossed well into the box for Gareth Coughlan’s shoot, the ball bobbling under Kevin Burns body.

A well-fought match ended 3-1, with both sides having a few half-chances to add to the score.

Shelbourne: Greg Murray; Philip Hand, Ryan Robinson (Lee Duffy ‘88), Lee Desmond, Simon Dixon; Jake Donnelly (Dylan Cashin ‘81), Gareth Coughlan; Dylan Connolly, Conor Murphy, Jordan Keegan; Lee Murtagh (Adam McDonnell ‘57).

Subs Not Used: Nathan Murphy, Gareth Brady, Matthew Taylor, Anthony Hewitt.

Yellow cards: None.

Red cards: None.

Waterford United: Kevin Burns; Conor Whittle, Shaun Corcoran, Gavin O’Donovan, Shaun Corcoran; Thomas Croke (Conor Coad ‘58), Jack Doherty, Kevin O’Connor, Brian Nolan (Patrick Fitzgerald ‘71), Andrew O’Connor (Philip Drohan HT); Willie John Kiely.

Subs Not Used: Ross Fitzpatrick, Mattthew Connor.

Yellow cards: Willie John Kiely, Gary Delaney.

Red cards: None.

Referee: John McLoughlin.

Attendance: 619 (official).
Extratime.ie Man of the Match: Conor Murphy.