Mervue United 2 - 0 Athlone TownFri, Jul 20 2012
Mervue United ended a losing streak of five games with a win over fourth placed Athlone Town on Friday night, courtesy of a second half double at Fahy’s Field.
After a dour opening half in which goal chances were at a premium both side’s did improve in the second period, but it was the home team that took their chances as Stephen Walsh scored his first goal for the club and Tom King wrapped matters up in injury time with a second.
The first half was a forgettable affair as we witnessed little to raise the small supports’ voices above shouting level. The home side created a half chance on 11 minutes when Jason Molloy skipped past Damien Rushe and then beat the full-back a second time with a neat drag back before picking out the inrushing Tom King who headed across Pat Jennings goal and wide.
Athlone’s Brian McCarthy had a header cleared off the post by the alert James Casserly on 25 minutes following an Eric Molloy corner from the right. Niall Scullion who was lively on the right wing in the opening period for Athlone hit a shot straight at Conor Gleeson after getting the better of Walsh on 36 minutes.
The brightest moment of the half arrived on 39 minutes when Mervue’s Molloy picked up a Pat Hoban pass and proceeded to strike a brilliant swerving effort into the top corner but Jennings managed to push it away as King flashed the loose ball across the empty goal.
The second period did pick up and Mervue should have hit the front just after the hour mark when a clever flick from Alan Murphy released Walsh through on goals but he delayed and completely miss cued his effort.
Athlone almost made Johnny Glynn’s side pay for that miss as Mark Walsh headed Barry O’Mahony’s dangerous cross against the post from close range and Mark Sherlock blasted the loose ball over Gleeson’s crossbar on 68 minutes.
Walsh made up for his earlier missed sitter as he nudged the home side in front with his first goal for Mervue on 72 minutes. Noel Varley played a lovely sweeping ball in between the Athlone defence for King to race onto and his low cross into the box was swept home by Walsh who had been moved up front for an injured Pat Hoban.
Despite a barrage of Athlone balls into the box in the final quarter the home team defended in numbers while looking dangerous on the break with Molloy and King’s pace. Athlone substitutes, Walsh and Sherlock, both headed wide before the ninety minutes were up and Mervue sealed the matter.
Mervue broke in the first minute of injury time and Walsh squared the ball to King and he made no mistake stroking the ball home past Jennings for a vital win for Johnny Glynn’s side.
Mervue Utd: Conor Gleeson; Martin Conneely, James Casserley (Michael McSweeney 90+3), Mike Elwood, Stephen Walsh; Tom King (Etanda Nkololo 90+2), Noel Varley, Gary Kelly, Alan Murphy, Jason Molloy; Pat Hoban (Marc Ludden 54).
Subs not used: TJ Forde (GK), Alex Lee, Brian Connolly, Damien O’Rourke.
Bookings: Walsh (38).
Athlone Town: Pat Jennings; Damien Rushe, Stephen Last, Brian McCarthy, Kevin Williamson; Niall Scullion, Eric Molloy (Mark Sherlock 46), Val Feeney (Mark Walshe 55), Barry O’Mahony, Brian Gill (Jason Hughes 89); Mark McGoldrick.
Subs not used: Gareth Higgins (GK), Joe Woods, Ross Kenny and Shane Dunne.
Bookings: Last (45).
Referee: Keith Callanan (Cork).
extratime.ie Man of the Match: Noel Varley (Mervue United).