Casey Div 2 Cup Final
Coill Dubh AFC 0 3 Naas United FC
(By Wayne Doyle)
A fresh autumn day, ideal footballing condition at Doctors Road Clane for this Division Two final.
Undoubtedly, the two best teams in the division go head to head once again for silverware. With Coill Dubh just pipping Naas Utd by the narrowest of margins in a thrilling contest at Cusack Park to secure the league weeks previous. The vibrant young Naas outfit will look to exact revenge and grab their share of silverware from Division two. The men from Blackwood will have other ideas as they look to compete the coveted double.
The game barely had time to take a breath when Naas were awarded a penalty in the opening minute after Conor Rapple was bundled over in the box. Jamie Boyd stepped up to dispatch the spot kick expertly with a tidy finish past Philip Doyle to give Naas Utd an ideal start. Damien Leeson was quick to encourage Coill Dubh and played a captain’s role, trying to get on the ball and settle his side down. Coill Dubh has a decent spell through the middle with Emmet Donoghue looking to pry open a water tight Naas Rearguard led by the experienced veteran Eoin Giblin and his apprentice Jamie Nulty who were vigilant of the danger. Naas created a decent opportunity after Owen Moran breezed by Graham o Sullivan and whipped an excellent ball which Adam Colton met with a powerful header that crashed off the crossbar after Philip Doyle got a finger tip to push it away to safety. Dylan Malone whipped a really menacing low corner, which Doyle couldn't hold onto. The ball wouldn't fall favourable for Naas, and Mark Hefferan was able to make the vital clearance. Coill Dubh working their most fluent move of the game when Adrian McNamee made a bursting run up the left wing and pick out Damien Leeson, Leeson turned and laid a perfect ball for the on rushing Donoghue who struck a powerful shot but Ronan Coady was well positioned and made it look a comfortable save. Coady from the resulting save looked to get Naas on the front foot immediately with quick throw to Jamie Nulty who clipped a pinpoint pass over O Sullivan’s head to Owen Moran who raced down the line and pulled a decent ball back across the eighteen-yard box. Joe Mills rose highest and had a lot of work to do to gain control of an awkward ball but he did so with a sublime first touch ,before he prodded the ball past Philip Doyle to double Naas Utds advantage on the half hour mark. Coill Dubh sensed the urgency now and peppered the Naas backline with some quality set-pieces from Damien Leeson, but couldn't a find an opening. Tim Barrett got dispossessed after being caught a little nonchalantly by the pacey Owen Moran who again raced down the right flank this time but he overcooked the his cross which Jamie Boyd just missed by millimetres another let off for Coill Dubh. Ciaran Bowers was introduced for Coill Dubh as Graham O Sullivan made way and Bower's made excellent last ditch tackles to immediately deny Adam Colton after a long kickout by Coady. Naas saw out the half with one last effort after the proficient Midfield dynamo Connor Rapple was dragged to ground thirty yards out, up stepped Eoin Giblin with a sweetly struck freekick that Philip Doyle pulled from the bottom corner with a fantastic save to end the half.
Coill Dubh all business at the start of the second half with Shane Bowers forcing Coady into a vital save after some good build-ups play by Cian Butler. Again, though, Naas just had more artillery out wide, and Jamie Nulty and Owen Moran just bombarded forward at every opportunity, breaking down Coill Dubs' resolve. Coill Dubh made some changes with Nigel Reynolds, Jamie Byrne, and influential playmaker Joey Behan entering the fray to give them some composure in the final third and indeed that proved fruitful from a possession perspective. Naas seemed to sit back now in a compact formation, inviting the Coill Dubh attacks and looking to counter themselves. Naas made some changes as well, with Henry Dunne ,Scott O Neill ,Conor Cooke, and Adam Greenhaul all introduced to fresh things up. Coill Dubh faced an even more challenging task after Shane Bowers received a second yellow reducing them to ten with an hour played. Naas made the numerical advantage work to their favour after Owen Moran made a powerful driving Run straight through the middle drawing in several defender Jamie Boyd bent is run impeccably, but Moran just put the pass too wide. Coill Dubh’s Tim Barrett made a vital interception and played a neat little pass over the Naas Rearguard the bounce deceived Ronan Coady and Jamie Byrne with the best opportunity of the half from a tight angle skewed his effort wide. Joey Behan was holding the ball up well for Coill Dubh, trying to get his teammates involved. Naas looked really dangerous on the counter with Connor Rapple latching on to loose ball he quickly found Scott O Neill, he delivered a first time ball across the Coill Dubh six yard area and Owen Moran at full stretch glanced a header off the post and wide. Coill Dubh were further impeded when substitute Joey Behan picking a second yellow to leave the Blackwood men reduced to nine.
Stephen Tilley, now operating in midfield for Naas, chased and harassed every loose ball. When Tilley was blatantly fouled, a minor fracas in sued and Scott O Neill received a red for Naas amongst a moment of indecision. With only fifteen left in the game, Naas sensed the finish line and pushed for a third. A quick-thinking Dylan Malone took a quick throw to Colton. He spun and got a volley away that never troubled Doyle. Naas saved the best for last with exceptional footballing move, started with a quick ball out from Keeper Coady to Conor Cooke who raced up the right wing and zipped a neat pass to Adam Greenhaul who turned adroitly between two player and picked out Connor Rapple who showed scintillating pace as he raced through the Coill Dubh Rearguard and apply a composed finished to the applause of the Naas sideline and ultimately wrap up the fixture 3-0
Coill Dubh played their part but couldn't find that breakthrough today. Best for Coill Dubh were Tim Barrett, Adrian McNamee, Damien Leeson, and Emmet Donoghue was top class.
Naas Utd were clinical on the day with an excellent game plan. Best for Naas were Coady , Jamie Nulty, Eoin Giblin, Owen Moran , Nolan ,Boyd, and Young Connor Rapple was phenomenal.
KDFL Senior Division team focus
Clane United FC 1 0 Naas United FC
Clane hosted Naas united in their final league game of the season . First half neither team created much chances in a tight game until the forty fourth minute when Sean Harnett squared the ball across the box to Aidan Ralph whose effort hit the post and followed up by Andy Brogan whose shot was cleared off the line. Clane utilised their big Squad at half time introducing James Ralph Mark Kelly and Rasdi. As the home side started to dominate the game thought they took the lead on fifty five minutes when Kelly whipped a ball across for Rasdi to finish but was ruled out for offside . Clane got their deserved goal on seventy minutes which turned out to be winner from seventeen year old Ralph who headed in from a Stephen Leavy corner . The introduction of another promising youngster from Clane’s underage set up Rhys Vaughan caused Naas problems who was unlucky not to seal the win. Naas pushed for equaliser late on without really forcing Sean Brennen into making a save as the game ended 1-0. Best for Clane were Noel Haverty, Stephen Leavy and Sean Connolly.
Clongorey FC 0 1 Clonmullion FC
Clonmullion FC sealed victory by the slenderest of margins on Sunday to retain the KDFL Senior League title for the third season in succession, with two games in hand. It was an even enough affair in the opening exchanges in this tie which was moved to Clonmullion due to Clongorey’s pitch been deemed unplayable following the unfavourable weather. Clongorey’s Adam Doyle had few crosses to deal with early on. Richard Kenna, Gary Hunt and Shaun Walsh were outstanding for the Clongorey men. However with fifteen minutes gone Clonmullion took the lead when a cross from Dylan Kennedy was guided home by Dean Fennessy. Outstanding performance from all at Clongorey especially Hunt, Headon, Walsh, Carter, Callan, , Mbala brothers, Doyle , Moody ,Kenna and especially Cornellie.