A masterclass performance by George O’Callaghan helped Waterford United to victory over Finn Harps in a one-sided affair at the RSC on Friday night last.
The Blues have now won seven of their opening eight games in the league and they remain two points clear of second-placed Derry City who recorded a 1-0 victory over Shelbourne at the Brandywell the same evening.
Following their only defeat of the season to date in Monaghan the previous week, the United manager Stephen Henderson made two changes. He started with O’Callaghan in the middle of the park with Gareth Cambridge making way. Gary Dunphy, who was surprisingly omitted in the North East, came back in just in front of the back four and that meant John Hayes returned to the bench, although he had to come on just before the break when Seamus Long was taken to hospital with a badly-damaged right ankle.
Those selected played in their normal positions, although Paul McCarthy was asked to play out wide right rather than in the middle to facilitate O’Callaghan, whose free kicks created both goals.
Apart from his deadball deliveries the much-travelled 30-year-old produced a display which thrilled the home supporters. He was dreadfully unlucky not to score a replica of his goal against Tramore in the Munster Cup the previous Tuesday. He also sprayed 70 and 80-yard passes around the park with gay abandon and it is clear to see that players like Paul McCarthy and Gary Dunphy are learning a lot from the experienced Leesider.