Another season in the First Division awaits for the supporters of Waterford United following a disastrous night in St Coleman’s Park. This was a game the Blues just had to win to secure a play-off position but sadly following on from dreadful displays away to Mervue United and Athlone Town another sub standard performance resulted in another defeat.
ith Mervue and Longford both winning, the Blues finished their campaign in fourth position in what was an eight team league.
A poor start to the season, off the field problems and rumblings of financial problems all added up to a campaign which was nothing short of horrible in all respects and one wonders what the future holds for the club following this beating against a team who finished their campaign second from bottom.
Apart from missing out on the prize money for finishing second or third the club has now lost the opportunity of getting some mush required revenue from two home play-off games and the foreseeable weeks and months look bleak to say the least.
The Blues had the first shot on target after two minutes when Paul Quilty tried his luck but defender Anthony O’Donnell blocked his effort. Three corner kicks were forced inside the opening six minutes and Philip Drohan got his head on to one of those flag kicks which were taken by Robbie McLarney but his effort was deflected away by Brian Fitzgerald.
The home side took the lead on 31 minutes when Davin O’Neill gave Craig Hyland no chance with a bullet header from 14 yards after he had met a right wing cross from Bobbi O’Donoghue.
Seven minutes later Ramblers should have increased their lead when Davin O’Neill picked out Ronan Staunton from the left but the latter lost control in front of an open goal.
Things went from bad to worse for Waterford when Davin O’Neill scored once again four minutes into the second half. He cut in from the left before curling the ball past Craig Hyland with style from just inside the penalty area.
Ben Ryan, who had replaced Robbie McLarney for the second half, brought the Blues back into the game when he scored from a free kick just after the hour mark. Dylan Mernagh, who had been switched from left full back to striker, was fouled just outside the box and Ryan who had scored two penalties in Waterford’s last visit to the venue made no mistake.
The visitors applied some pressure following that goal and Peter White had a shot blocked on the line but the home side regained their composure and their substitute Kynan Rocks went close with a curling effort from outside the penalty area.
The Waterford side tried to lift their game in the final minutes and Conor Meade shot over the crossbar on 84 minutes.
This was a hard defeat to take and one had to feel sorry for the supporters who had made the journey to Co Cork.
There were a number of young supporters at the game under the ages of seven and eight and it is hard to believe they have never seen the club play in the Premier League and you have to wonder if they will ever see their local club play in the top division.
To see the youngsters leave the ground in tears was hard to witness and just what happens from here on in is impossible to predict.
Cobh Ramblers: Shane Hallahan, Brendan Frahill, Anthony O’Donnell, Andrew Bharanderer, Brian Fitzgerald, John Meade, Martin Deady, Robert Waters, Davin O’Neill, Ronan Staunton, Bobbi O’Donoghue.
Subs. James Carson for Bharanderer (46 mins) Kynan Rocks for Staunton (58) Alan O’Sullivan for O’Donoghue (79 mins)
Waterford United: Craig Hyland, Conor Whittle, Dylan Mernagh, Gavin Kavanagh, Paddy Barrett, Robbie McLarney, Conor Meade, Peter White, Paul Quilty, Vinny Sullivan, Philip Drohan.
Subs: Ben Ryan for McLarney (46 mins) Kevin O’Connor for Drohan (58 mins) Marco Chindea for Quilty (71 mins)
Referee: Keith Callanan (Cork)