Cork City 1 - 3 Blackburn RoversSun, Aug 12 2012
Cork City were always going to have their eyes on tomorrow night’s crucial league game with St Patrick’s Athletic but they still produced a decent enough spectacle with Blackburn Rovers, who were rounding up their pre-season preparations at Turner’s Cross.
Though the home team led, they were defeated 3-1 in comfortable fashion in the end against a fluid Blackburn team who are in league action as soon as next Saturday when they take on Ipswich Town away from home.
City had the deadlock broken within six minutes however as Kalen Spillane’s 40 yard punt was parried by Paul Robinson and Andy O’Connell arrived in the area to drive home the rebound.
Spillane’s blushes were then spared after 13 minutes when he headed a Morten Gamst Pedersen header into his own net only for referee Padraigh Sutton to award a free-out for a push on the defender.
O’Connell, who was paired up front with new-signing Keigan Parker, is tipped as a hot prospect at Cork and he was unlucky when heading over from a Stephen Kenny cross on the right after 17.
It was a bit better than the usual friendly fare, no doubt because this was Rovers’ last run-out before they take on Ipswich in their opening league game next weekend, and they visitors drew level thanks to an acrobatic effort from debutant Colin Kazim-Richards.
Some beautiful build-up play from Scott Dann and Mauro Formica was eventually worked out to Bradley Orr. The right-back whipped in a cross towards the six-yard box and Kazim-Richards, who is on loan at Rovers for the season from Galatasaray, volleyed home to leave Cork stopper Paul White with no chance.
Though there weren’t as many subs as the last friendly in this venue – when Cork alone made 16 changes in the second half against a Manchester United select – the changes did disrupt the pattern of the game and Pedersen made it 3-1 with a belter.
Just over 30 yards out from goal Blackburn were awarded a free-kick following a handball by Neal Horgan. And when Pedersen struck it, you just knew it was heading for the goal as the ball curled into the left corner, giving White no chance.
Cork rarely threatened in the second half, Keigan Parker lofting one over the bar after a long drive forward on 71, as Blackburn dominated the closing stages by holding on to the ball and passing it to death.
Cork City: Paul White (David Browne 84); Neal Horgan, Gavin Kavanagh, Kalen Spillane (Colman Kennedy 84), Stephen Carroll; Stephen Kenny (Rob Lehane 84), Brian Lenihan (Alan Browne 71), Garry Buckley (Roy Kenny 71), Keith Quinn (Jonathan Hannafin 71); Andy O’Connell (Danny Morrissey 63), Keigan Parker (Paudie Quinn 71).
Blackburn Rovers: Paul Robinson; Bradley Orr, Scott Dann, Gael Givet, Jason Lowe (Josh Morris 71); Mauro Formica (Edinho 84), Dickson Etuhu (John O’Sullivan 84), Morten Gamst-Pedersen (Paulo Jorge 63), Fabio Nunes (Bruno Ribeiro 71); Colin Kazim-Richards (David Goodwillie 84), Nuno Gomes (David Dunn 63).
Subs not used: Grant Hanley, Jake Kean, Adam Henley.
Referee: Padraigh Sutton.
Official attendance: 1,492
ExtraTime.ie Man of the Match: Colin Kazim-Richards.
Alan Smith has been writing for ExtraTime since 2008. He works as a full-time journalist based in Cork, working as a sub-editor for TCM and freelancing for a range of national titles. Follow him on twitter @alansmith90.