FEATURE GAME LEINSTER LEADER
KDFL LUMSDEN LEAGUE CUP FINAL.
Clane Untied FC 1 4 Clonmullion FC
Lumsden Cup final day is always a special occasion in the KDFL calendar. With Clonmullion FC and Clane United contesting this year Final. Clane United overcame Coill Dubh in the semi-finals with a convincing win in a local Derby. Clonmullion put Kilcullen to the sword in the other semi-final 3-0 and are yet concede a goal in this year's competition after four games.
The scene was Set at Mullarney Park Castledermot home of Castle Villa AFC, with the pitch in immaculate conditions considering the torrential rain in recent days.
Clonmullion straight on the offensive with Kian Cully playing a first time ball up the line to Mulhall who back heeled it into the path of Dillon , who was bundled over to give the Athy men the first sight on goal after two minutes. The resulting freekick didn't materialise into anything substantial but was an early indication of Clonmullion's intent. Clane didn't have to wait too long for their first opportunity of the game when Commisky flicked a header to the on rushing Eoghan Maguire who was inside the penalty area and was just readying himself to pull the trigger when Mark Hughes made a vital tackle with just five minutes on the clock. Both teams committing men forward made for a real open game , great to watch. Clane had another half chance in the tenth minute, Ciaran Kelly swung in an excellent corner and Jack Kelly Rose highest with a bullet header that was saved at the feet of Mick Lawless in the Mull goals.
It was Clonmullion who broke the deadlock after fifteen minutes. When Stephen Dunne was dispossessed in midfield by Nathan Robinson who in turn played a quick ball into space and Cody Mulhall galloped down on goal, Gavin O Dwyer did well to hamper his progress and it looked if all avenues were closed off but Mulhall slid a clever ball back across goal and Jody Dillon calmly slotted the ball past Brennan in the Clane goal with a sublime first time finish. It was the Athy side with their tail up now and they nearly doubled their advantage moments later, Thompson clipped a great ball over the top and Lee Doyle raced onto it, he got a shot away under pressure from Dunne from an acute angle that was eventually was parred away by Brennan in the Clane goal. Clane took a direct approach and that nearly paid dividends from a Brennan goal kick Cathal Geoghegan expertly took it on the chest, spun and got a decent volley away that was goal bound before Lawless plucked it from just under the crossbar.
Clonmullion were having success out wide with Thompson who was willing to take his man on at every opportunity, and you felt another goal wasn't far away and that proved to be the case. Thompson got to the endline and whipped in a quality ball that Brennan managed to punch away the ball fell to Mulhall who worked an angle and got a shot away that ricocheted back out wide to Thompson who again whipped in another excellent ball only this time Jody Dillon raced through the middle and powered home a textbook header to double Clonmullion's advantage on the half hour mark. Clane not reluctant to let these early setbacks dampen their approach almost pulled one back immediately. An brilliant solo run by Mark Kelly out of the Clane back line got his head up and found Eoghan Maguire with a perfectly weighty through ball that Maguire struck early and Lawless was again equal to the effort.
There was a huge tipping point with ten minutes remaining in the half when Killian Patchell was shown a straight red for Clane for a tackle on Nathan Robinson , certainly a yellow, but a very harsh red in the context of a Lumsden Final. Kian Cully thought he had further increased Clonmullion's lead after he had the ball in the Clane goal after a neat toe poke but was rule offside. Clane finished the half with a real flurry, a lightening counter led by Andy Brogan who skipped by two player before laying the ball off to Commisky who got a decent shot off but was blocked by the veteran Timmy Doyle, the ball bobbled back outside the penalty area and Ciaran Kelly unleashed a wicked left foot drive that looked like it was Clane’s gateway into the game but it hit the stanchion and away to safety. Clonmullion had a 2-0 lead and numerical advantage at the halfway mark but Clane showed they were still very willing and capable.
The second half couldn't have started worse for Clane as Stephen Dunne had a little tug on Lee Doyle and he went over in dramatic fashion before Referee Niall Culleton pointed to the spot. Up stepped Mulhall but his spot kick was expertly saved by Brennan who was having an outstanding game between the posts for Clane. Clonmullion really started to turn the tempo up and again it was Jody Dillon who now looked to turn provider after a great flick on from a Lawless kickout out Lee Doyle shown a blistering burst of pace to garner himself an opportunity but couldn't direct his effort beyond Brennan who again was on hand to keep Clane in the contest. Nathan Robbo who's passing was on song today played a really sumptuous ball to Mulhall who weaved and Jinked but couldn't direct his shot past Brennan who stood tall and again made the save. Clane did have a lull period in the second half but they found there second wind and made a real charge lead by Kelly, Geoghegan, and Commisky. A really inviting Geoghegan corner found the head of Jack Kelly on the hour mark, but the Clane Centre-half didn't quite get connection and glanced his effort just wide.
A lovely flowing movement by Clane involving Commisky, Connolly and Maguire looked to finish it off, but Hughes was on hand again to smoother the danger. The game was certainly stretched at this point and Clonmullion still probing for another goal carved out a good opening after great linkup play between Thompson and Robinson the Clinical Dillon was again on had to apply the finishing touch from six yards for his Hattrick and Clonmullion's third. Clane had no quit in them and really pushing hard to find that elusive goal that might get them back into game . After a succession of corners Clane did eventually get the breakthrough when Sean Connolly reacted first to a loose ball and smashed a shot into the roof of the net to claw one back for United with ten remaining in the fixture.
Clonmullion's defence was well organised Lawless, Doyle and Cully kept them composed down the home stretch. Clane in their haste get that second were wide open to counter attack especially out wide. Cully spotted the opening and releasing the every willing Thompson who was bearing down on goal before Jack Kelly made an last gasp tackle that was right on the money. The numerical advantage was starting to take it's toll and Clonmullion added a fourth in injury time when Johnny Fennell broke down the left and delivery a inch perfect ball for the star man Dillon to head home from six yards in injury time.
Clane played their part and really should hold their heads high given the circumstances. Best for Clane Brennan in goal was phenomenal, Jack Kelly, Mark Kelly in Defence, Commisky and Geoghegan left it all out there today.
Clonmullion were brilliantly organised, bundles of pace out wide and took the opportunities that presented themselves. That secures the Double for the Athy outfit with still a possibility of the historic triple. Best for Clonmullion were Lawless, Hughes, Cully, in defence Thompson, Robinson and the Star man up top Dillon who was exceptional, four goal in a Lumsden final will stand for a long time.
Dillon also received the man of the match award presented by KDFL Chairman Michael Casey, Tony Lumsden son Clive and two of Tony’s grandchildren Jayden and Ciara were on hand to make the official presentation of the trophy to Clonmullion captain Michael Lawless.