Southend United 1 Crusaders 1
Southend United and Crusaders played out an exciting contest in Ozier Park on Thursday evening last. Ozier is the temporary home ground of Southend at the moment due to ongoing improvements of their own venue in Ballybeg.
Both teams fielded players who have been around the Junior League block a number of times, but they still possess plenty of skill even if their pace is not quite what it used to be.
Southend took the lead with the last kick of the first half and Crusaders equalised with the last kick of the second period. Now that is what you could describe as dramatic fare!
United had won their opening match of the new campaign with a four-nil victory against Bolton. Crusaders on the other hand were playing their first game of the season.
Southend went in search of an early goal and they went close after 6 minutes when Trevor Swift picked out Robbie Barrett but his angled shot from the right went narrowly wide of the far post.
Shortly afterwards the Crusaders goalkeeper Jono Moran did well to tip away a fierce shot from Barrett. Paul O’Neill, a player who scored many goals for Tramore during his career, was leading the Crusaders line well up front and he sprayed the ball out right to Gary Kent on 11 minutes. His cross looked destined for O’Neill who had continued his run but the Southend defender Jonathan Sheridan cut out the danger.
O’Neill was back in the thick of the action once again on 17 minutes. He cut in from the left before cracking in a
shot but United goalkeeper Kieran O’Gorman stuck out his foot and managed to turn the ball out at the expense of a corner.
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