Blues no match for red hot Limerick

League of Ireland First Division

Waterford United 2
Limerick 5

Matt Keane reports

wuLimerick, relegated from the Premier League last season, were far too strong for Waterford United at the RSC on Friday night last.
The Shannonsides have retained the majority of last year’s team and also added some new players including Aaron Greene who signed from St Patrick’s Athletic and there is no doubt whatsoever that they are destined to make an immediate return to the top flight.
It was clear from the opening minutes that the visitors were far superior and when the Blues conceded the opening goal from a set piece there was only going to be one outcome. Two further goals followed before the halftime break and the contest was well and truly over at that stage.
The lead goal for the visitors from Shannonside arrived on 19 minutes when they forced their sixth corner kick.
Shane Duggan whipped the ball in from the right side that found the head of Robbie Williams and he headed past goalkeeper Corey Chambers from deep inside the penalty area
Blues keeper Corey Chambers came to his sides rescue with a quite stunning save less than three minutes later when Stephen Kenny set up Chris Mulhall on the right side of the area but his cracking effort from the edge of the area was magnificently tipped over the crossbar.
Limerick doubled their lead on 40 minutes when Shane Duggan skipped past a couple of challenges down the right side of the penalty area before forcing Corey Chambers into a fine save but Aaron Greene was on hand to drill the close range rebound to the back of the net.
It got worse for Roddy Collins’ side on the stroke of the half time whistle when the visitors added a third goal as substitute Paul O’Connor picked up possession 35-yards from goal and beat keeper Corey Chambers with a right-footed shot that the netminder did manage to get a hand to.
The Blues boss made a couple of changes at the half time break with the introduction of both Aaron O’Connor and Dylan McGuire but David O’Leary nearly grabbed a goal back five minutes into the second half but his header was straight at the keeper
A fourth goal arrived for the favourites to win the division on 75 minutes when Stephen Kenny sent in a corner kick from the right side that found the head of the unmarked Paul O’Connor and he powered a header from eight yards past keeper Chambers.
The heads of the Blues players didn’t drop and James O’Brien pulled a goal back on 84 minutes when he got on the end of a left-wing delivery from Aaron O’Connor before firing past keeper Freddy Hall from close range.
O’Brien was celebrating his second goal of the game as the Blues continued to press late on when the midfielder ghosted in at the back post to get on the end of a left-wing Darren Murphy cross and after turning onto his left-foot, he beat keeper Hall with a sweet left-footed strike from 12 yards.
Limerick capitalised on a defensive mistake when adding a fifth goal in second half injury time when a slip up in defence saw Aaron Greene take full advantage as he raced clear one on one with Corey Chambers before slotting the ball to the back of the net.

WATERFORD UNITED: Corey Chambers, Robbie Buckley, Jimmy Dermody (Dylan McGuire `46), Ian Sinnott, Shane Mackey, David O’Leary, Anthony McAlavey (Darren Murphy `64), James O’Brien, Philly Gorman, Eoin Rhodes, Sean Byrne (Aaron O’Connor)

LIMERICK FC: Freddy Hall, Robbie Williams, Seamus Sharkey, Shane Duggan (Paul O’Connor `42), Shane Tracy, Garbhan Coughlan (Lee J Lynch `58), Aaron Greene, Stephen Kenny, Chris Mulhall (John O’Flynn `76), Colm Murphy, Paudie O’Connor

Referee: David Keeler (Cork)

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“You can’t give away soft goals” Roddy Collins.

Matt Keane reports

Waterford United manager Roddy Collins was needless to say extremely downbeat when he tried to explain how his team were outclassed. “In the first half I didn’t think they were three goals better than us to me honest with you and we said at halftime don’t lose it and we didn’t. They are a very good side. They are very fit, well organised and you could see they have been playing together for some time and we distributed them at times but then we threw them a goal from a corner kick and at that stage.
“I felt if we could go in at halftime one goal down we could change things especially down the left side but then we gave away two more soft goals and at that stage it was a case of damage limitation and begin preparing for next week. They are going to be the champions, don’t have any doubt about that. I told you that last week. Having said that it doesn’t matter who you are playing if you give away goals like we are doing. You have to defend and people have to do their job properly. We gave away two soft goals in Drogheda also and we need an experienced centre half but the budget dictates that unlike Limerick who can sign whoever they want. We need young Roddy (Collins `Jnr) and Yoann (Fellrath) in our team and I would appeal to the people who deal with this to give us some assistance and allow us register those players”.

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