Athboy Celtic 3
Baileboro Celtic 0
Thanks to Athboy Celtic match sponsor Alfie’s Bar & Venue. Please support local.
The home side got their season off the mark with a comprehensive victory and the all-important three points. After a difficult first few games, Anthony Kavanagh’s side really stood up to the task yesterday in cold windy conditions at the Convent grounds.
The game started at a hectic pace and both sides had efforts on goal within the first half hour, with the hosts carving out the better opportunities. Cian Quinn was the first to have a clear sight in front of goal as he beat the offside trap getting through on goal 20 yards out, but his effort was well saved by the Cavan net minder. Baileboro best attempts on the day were mostly from set pieces and 25 mins an in swinging corner from the left was headed goalward by midfielder Darren Byrne, only for Paul Sheridan to make an excellent save to keep it scoreless.
The Athboy lads had two more excellent opportunities before eventually breaking the deadlock. The first was a smashing 25 yard free kick from Cian Quinn that rebounded back out off the crossbar to safety and soon after that Jack Kelly somehow weaved his way through the Baileboro defence and beat the keeper with his shot across goal but again the woodwork saved Baileboro as the ball came off the post and Luke Byrne was just beaten to the rebound by a Cavan defender as he cleared it off the line. Athboy were rueing their missed opportunities at this point and at this point it was looking like it could be one of those days when missed opportunities come back to haunt you.
However, on 41 minutes the home sides fears were eased soon after a Baileboro attack when full-back Glenn Darcy and striker Colman Murray combined well on the left for the latter to deliver a perfect cross field ball into the path of the on-running Quinn. The young Athboy man was clean through on goal and made no mistake on this occasion, despatching a low shot to the corner of the net from a central position 20 yards from goal. This was the least that our lads deserved and rightly went into the break a goal to the good. A half-time change saw Aaron Daly coming on the left wing in place of Luke Byrne.
The first few minutes of the second half saw Baileboro bring the game to the home side a little more and following a bit of scrappy play on 49 mins, the Baileboro number 6 had a good sight of goal 15 yards out, but pulled his effort narrowly wide of target. This was probably the reminder that the Athboy lads needed that the Cavan men were just one kick of the ball away from levelling up the game. On 60 minutes. Athboy finally doubled their advantage with striker Colman Murray bagging his first of the season with a tidy finish. Baileboro looked to have cleared the danger with a ball out of defence but Eamon Cusack intercepted the ball 40 yards out and sent it left to Darcy who crossed to the far post into the path of Murray, who took a touch to steady himself and a second to finish low and hard into the net.
The boys in black and yellow made the game safe with the decisive third on 74 mins when Darcy again turned provider with a long ball for forward Jack Kelly, who kept his nerve to chip the oncoming Baileboro number 1 from 25 yards. Kelly had been unlucky with a couple of efforts earlier in this content and got a deserved goal in the end. There were reinforcements needed from the side-line in the last 20 too with Cian Farrelly for Jack Kelly and young Paddy Griffin for Eamon Cusack. The Athboy lads saw out the remaining minutes of the game and all in all can take great confidence from this performance and result. A fantastic performance by the home side and it would be unfair to single out individuals as it was as a collective that this result and performance came about. Great to see the defence keep their first clean sheet of the season, hopefully there will be many more to come!
- Paul Sheridan, 2. Emmet Maguire, 3. Glenn Darcy, 4 Cillian Maguire, 5 Jamie Boyne, 6. Eamon Cusack, 7. Cian Quinn, 8. Kevin Kelly, 9. Jack Kelly, 10. Colman Murray, 11. Luke Byrne
Subs used: Aaron Daly for Byrne (45 mins), Cian Farrelly for Kelly (76 mins), Paddy Griffin for Cusack (81 mins)
Our first away match of the season is next Friday 19th April versus Trim Town, with a 6.45 KO.
Best of luck to Baileboro Celtic for the season.