Cabinteely lost to UCD on Friday night by one goal to nil, this is the 11th time that Cabo have been on the wrong side of a one goal margin. This stat is a testament to how close Cabo are pushing teams and while Eddie Gormley may find his side down the table, there is definitely positives to be taken from how tight their matches are. This 1-0 win was enough for UCD to secure their playoff spot against Finn Harps.
We like to avoid using football cliches, but this was a game of two halves as far as Cabinteely were concerned. In the first half, Cabo played very deep and created very little whereas in the second half Cabinteely began to press UCD high and started to create chances of their own.
Cabinteely had just the one chance of note in the first half with Durrad and Oguntola combining well on the right hand side in a counter attack, Oguntola found the onrushing Stephen Dunne outside the box but his shot was well saved.
UCD dominated possession in the first half, Cabo were defending well though, limiting the students to long range efforts which were not troubling Gillen. The breakthrough came from some individual brilliance, Jamie Doyle picked up the ball outside the box and weaved his way past two Cabinteely defenders before cooly slotting the ball past Gillen. It was no more than UCD deserved based on the first half and as Gormley’s side went in at the half they knew things needed to improve in the second.
The second half was a much improved display. Cabo pressed UCD high and began to enjoy spells of possession. Gormley changed from a 4-4-2 to a 4-5-1 and this change benefitted his side who began to get the upper hand in the midfield battle.
Cabo were now playing in UCD’s half but UCD still had their chances to extend their lead, Gillen saved bravely on a 1-on-1 with Ryan Swan, the keeper diving at his feet, both players needed treatment following this but were both thankfully alright to play on. Langtry then went close from range, his half volley from 25 yards skimmed the top of the bar as it went behind for a goal kick.
Cabinteely had claims for a penalty late on, Purdy delivered a dangerous ball into the box and it looked to come off a UCD hand but the ref waved play on. Soon after, Oguntola found himself bearing down on goal but he lost control of the ball at the crucial moment, the striker’s usual silky footwork working against him this time.
As Cabo pressed for the equaliser, there was real drama deep into injury time. UCD were awarded a free kick in their own half which was passed back to their goalkeeper O’Donnell who was outside his box, he picked the ball up amidst confusion of whether the initial free kick had been taken. The quick thinking Cabo players raced to retrieve the ball and take a quick free kick into the empty net, O’Donnell flung the ball away as he sprinted back to his goal. The referee only booked the goalkeeper for his first offence when many in the ground were expecting to see him receive his marching orders. Cabinteely had all 11 men in the final third for the free kick, with Gillen coming up to join the attack butUCD managed to defend the free kick and clear the danger as the final whistle blew.
UCD AFC: Conor O’Donnell (GK), Mark Langtry, Maxi Kouogun, Michael Leahy, Ryan McLaughlin, Ryan Swan, Eoin Kirwan, Jack Watson, Gary O’Neill, Jamie Doyle, Conor Cannon (Jason McClelland 86)
Subs Not Used: Niall Corbet (GK), Sean Coyne, Daniel Tobin, Adam Harney, Sean Byrne, Gareth Coughlan
Booked: O’Donnell (90+4), Doyle (90)
Cabinteely FC: Cathal Gillen (GK), Karl Byrne (Sean Burke 90), Victor Ekanem, Edward McDonagh, Kevin Knight, Stephen Dunne, Aaron Brilly, Richard Purdy, Michael Brown (Darren Clarke 68), Peter Durard (Stephen Hanley 63), Sodiq Oguntola
Subs Not Used: Sean Hyland (GK), Daniel Campbell, Josh Quinlivan, Jamie McGlynn
Booked: Byrne (88), Knight (75), Dunne (50)
Match Referee: Simon Rogers