Blues Off Colour Against The Hoops

Waterford United striker Daniel Pender heads for goal against Shamrock Rovers in the Under 19 League at the RSC last Saturday.

Waterford United striker Daniel Pender heads for goal against Shamrock Rovers in the Under 19 League at the RSC last Saturday.

Elite Under-19 League Southern Section

Waterford United 0
Shamrock Rovers 2

League leaders Waterford United lost a rare game on Saturday when they were beaten by Shamrock Rovers.
This was easily their most disappointing display of the season and it has brought second placed Limerick back into the picture. The Shannonsiders remain seven point behind the Blues but they have two games in hand.

On Sunday next Waterford travel to play Salthill and their last game is at home to Cobh Ramblers. Limerick have to travel to play Shamrock Rovers this weekend.

Playing with the aid of the strong wind in the first half, the visitors took the lead on 18 minutes when keeper Matthew Connor tipped a cracking left-footed shot from Cian Kavanagh but from the resulting Thomas Tiernan left-wing corner kick to the near post, Steven Kelly headed the ball home from close range.

The Blues had a glorious chance to restore parity less than three minutes later when a brilliant through ball from Aaron O’Connor sent Mikie Rowe into the clear only for the striker to be upended by keeper Michael Kelly but Rowe blazed the resulting spot kick wide of the left hand post.

Rovers went close to adding a second goal on 29 minutes when Cian Kavanagh did well out on the left to send the ball to the back post for Ben Hanrahan but his superb left-footed curling effort goes just inches wide with Matthew Connor beaten.

The second half saw both teams very slow into stride with the Blues playing with the elements that could have helped with an equalising goal on 64 minutes when Daniel Pender’s long throw found Daryl Power but his effort was blocked out for a corner kick.

Aaron O’Connor sent over the delivery from the right side of the penalty area that found the head of the unchallenged Pender but he couldn’t direct his header on target as the ball flew over the crossbar of Shamrock Rovers goalkeeper Michael Kelly.

Rovers left the Blues needing a mountain to climb as they doubled their lead on 74 minutes when Dylan Kavanagh fired in a left-footed shot from 20 yards that deflected into the path of Ben Hanrahan and he swept the ball past Matthew Connor from the right-side of the penalty area.

It has to be said that the Blues were disappointing during the course of the tie but they could have set up an exciting finish had they taken a chance that fell their way five minutes from time when central defender Shane Mackey got on the end of a long Pender throw but he blazed over from ten yards.

Waterford United: Matthew Connor, Robbie Buckley (Eric O’Halloran ‘79), Mark Slater (Conor Murray ‘87), Shane Mackey, Maurice Shanahan (Roy Butler ‘87), Aaron O’Connor (Sami Ogayemi ‘82), Ethan Boyle, Daryl Power, Ross Fitzpatrick, Mikie Rowe, Daniel Pender

Shamrock Rovers: Michael Kelly, Nathan Benson, Jason McClelland, Steven Kelly, Lee Mitchell, Shane Boyle, Thomas Tiernan (Alex Wright ‘68), Richie Purdy, Ben Hanrahan (Tunde Carter ‘77), Cian Kavanagh, Dylan Kavanagh

Referee: Andrew Mullally assisted by Adam Tszample and Pat O’Connor

Matt Keane

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