Under 17 League Round-Up (Week 7)

The SSE Airtricity League’s Under 17 has reached week 7 and St Patrick’s Athletic and Finn Harps are joint top of the Northern Elite Division after a 1-1 draw over the weekend, while in the Southern Elite Division Shamrock Rovers continue to lead the way.

Northern Elite Division 

Finn Harps and St Patrick’s Athletic drew 1-1 in the game of the weekend. Conor Cowley scored for St Pats. Finn Harps face a North-West Derby against Derry City next week, while St Pats have a Mark Farren Cup game against Cabinteely on Wednesday evening.

Sligo Rovers had a big 2-0 win over Longford Town. Sligo’s Danny O’Leary said, “Very pleased with the result but more so with the performance of our lads. We played good football, kept possession, created some good chances and were excellent overall.”

“Two goals in the first half gave us a lead at half time, but we knew Longford would come at us from the start of the second half, so the third goal settled us down around the hour mark. The fourth goal coming after 75 minutes gave us a deserved victory.”

“The lads have worked hard and got what they deserved today. Getting four different scorers was good, but more importantly the performance of all the players today.”

Longford’s stand out players today were Dylan Glancy and Patrick O’Sullivan.”

Longford’s James Dermody was hugely disappointed, “We didn’t perform again away from home. It’s really frustrating currently when away from home, especially when I know the quality of this squad and what the can achieve if the apply themselves correctly”

“Started the game really well and could have been 1-0 up within the first 5 minutes, but two errors within ten minutes of each other meant we went in 2-0 down at half time”

“Sligo deserved to win the game today but I don’t believe that there was four goals of a difference between the two teams”

“Without question the standard shown against Sligo isn’t good enough at this level, and the players need to learn from days like this or the won’t improve. Preparation in terms of pre-match needs to be better. Without question too many players let themselves down and this can’t be allowed to continue, I expect a different performance in our next game”

Monaghan picked up their first point of the season with credible 2-2 draw with Derry City, but Derry boss Gary Duffy, while full of praise for Monaghan, was very critical of his own players after the game. Duffy said, “First half has been as poor as we have been all season, very disappointing. Monaghan went in at half-time deservedly in front.”

“We made few changes at half-time but got hit with a killer punch two minutes into the second half gave. We gave away a cheap free kick and defended it poorly which resulted in Monaghans 2nd goal.”

“Young Monaghan lad had a great finish with a volley from 20 yards but the build up from goal from a defensive perspective was very poor by us. But give credit to the young lad who scored, as it was a super finish.”

“From then on we took control and probably would’ve went on to win the game. We dominated possession but lack of imagination in the final third and poor finishing let us down.”

“We got a goal from a corner scored by Ethan Harkin from a header, and got a good individual goal for our 2nd by Conor McGowan. He beat a few players coming in on the right and beat the keeper to slot home.”

“Overall, in my opinion it was a game of two halves. Monaghan were the better side in first and we were in the second. But if we come out like we did in the first half again this season, in this league, it would be game over regards points. But the reaction we got in the second half was good, so that’s a positive. Well done to Monaghan too for a good sporting game, they had a few good players on the day.”

Monaghan’s Paul Smyth was more than pleased, “We are delighted to get our first point on the board. However we had mixed emotions directly after the game as we had a two nil lead.”

“Chris Sombete gave us the lead after 15 minutes with a close range finish, following a corner kick and Eli Ward put us 2-0 up with a fine strike for just outside the box.”

“Derry threw the kitchen sink at us after that with some very direct play.They are a strong physical side and we had to withstand a lot of pressure.”

“I’ve spoke on here before about the lads improving gradually and today was more proof of that.”

“We have 3 games left before the mid season break and the lads are determined to pick up their first win before that.”

“We got some wonderful news this week, when Aaron Mulligan was selected to the Irish under 16 squad for their upcoming international series. It’s fantastic news for Aaron but also great for the Monaghan/Cavan football partnership. It proves that we can offer a pathway to a higher level.”

Dundalk and Bohemians drew 0-0, while on Monday evening Shelbourne beat Drogheda 3-0.

Southern Elite Division 

Shamrock Rovers continued their unbeaten start to the season with a 1-0 win over Bray Wanderers. Rovers manager Stephen Rice said, “It was a tough game against Bray, and like every game it’s more learning for our boys so we will look to improve for the next game.”

Waterford and Cabinteely drew 1-1 in a game played in atrocious conditions due to heavy rain. Lee Costello had the Blues in front, only for Cabinteely to equalise shortly after through Kian Bolger.

Waterford manager John Furlong said“My feelings are a little bit mixed to be honest with the level of our performance and not so much with the result because that would be unfair on Cabinteely. Our passing was wayward at times and that was disappointing also. It could have been a different story if we had gone in at half time leading but we conceded a goal 30 seconds after we took the lead and that had a big bearing on the match.”

“The penalty miss was a setback but in fairness to Cabinteely they did strike the woodwork on two occasions afterwards and they could have gone on to win the match. I was talking to their manager before the game and he said they can be good one week and not so good the next so perhaps a draw was a fair result.”

“Looking at the body language of our players you can tell that they are disappointed with the result but they will have to learn that we make mistakes as a team and not as individuals and that is something we will have to look at during the coming weeks. I don’t think we have been particularly poor in any game this season so we will just push on from here”

Cork City and Wexford also drew 1-1 in a highly entertaining game. Cork’s Brendan O’Sullivan told us, “While the result was a little disappointing, overall we were very pleased with the performance and how much the players are improving on a weekly basis.”

“Centre backs Jack O’Sullivan and Jamie O’Sullivan continue to get better and are developing a very good partnership, which is encouraging.”

“Brian Lynch, Rory Doyle and Dale Holland dominated the midfield and dictated the tempo of the game.”

“Sadly it was another case of not taking our chances in the first half, when we created at least six very good chances and took none of them.”

“We went behind when Jamie O’Sullivan slipped on the wet surface when bringing the ball out from the back, leaving a 1 on 1 which Wexford converted. Jamie O’Sullivan made up for it however heading home at the other end on 90 mins. Five minutes later we got a penalty which was brilliantly saved by the Wexford keeper from Cian Murphy’s strike.”

“Overall it was a high quality game which both sides contributed to and will benefit from. At this age group the performance and improvement of individual players is the real aim rather than simply winning.”

Wexford’s Derek O’Brien said, “We were disappointed and happy at the same time after the game. We were disappointed that we didn’t come away with the 3 points after being ahead until the 91st minute but also happy to take the point after our goalkeeper saved a Cork Penalty on 94th minute.”

“Truthfully though Cork fully deserved the point they got and probably more. Our goalkeeper Michael Walsh was phenomenal yesterday. He saved everything that came at him including the last minute penalty.”

“Cork were in control of large periods of the game but we managed to take the lead on the 65th minute when Brandon Deady picked up a loose pass and finished past the keeper from the edge of the box.”

“Cork threw everything at us for the last 20 minutes and although we defended very well a goal was inevitable. Cork are a very good team and I had said to the team before the match Cork would not give up until the final whistle and that was proved correct.”
“I was delighted with the attitude we showed yesterday. The whole team battled hard for the point and gave everything for each other so that was a real positive to take away from the game.”

Galway United drew 2-2 with Cobh Ramblers at East United on Saturday.
Galway’s Alan Murphy said, “Today was our second home game of the season after a long period on the road. We started the game well and looked the better side in the first half despite conceding a poor goal before half time.”

“It was great to get Harry O’Gorman back into the team after injury and he performed well throughout.”

“We conceded another poor goal and were probably lucky to take a point from a game that we had enough chances to win. Cobh worked hard and were well organised throughout and difficult to break down.”

“Josh Keane Quinlivan secured a point for us in the end with a fine individual effort from a free kick.”

Cobh’s Damien Rowe said, “We started the game very well, pressed high and could have been two up if more clinical from Eoin and Jaze.”

“We went behind again but take nothing away from the quality delivery from them, but poor defensively from us there. Great  to get back into it before half-time with a bit of a scrappy goal from Eoin, but that might up his confindence levels.”

“Second half was quite flat for a bit with a few stoppages for injuries, and there was a bit of bite creeping into the game, which in fairness I liked. You don’t see it much anymore and both sides gave as good as they got in that department.”

“Their keeper was sloppy with a pass out from defence and Loic intercepted and finished well into net.”

“That spurred them on and the game came to life, but galway pressed for an equaliser and got it from a free kick. They then pressed for the winner. We held on in fairness, and also could have nicked it in the end from a great run by Conor O’Leary,  but for a weak finish at the end of it. Happy in the end with an away point to a good Galway side.”

Unfortunately for Cobh Ross Slevin was carried off after tearing his hamstring, and will probably be out until after the summer break.

The Kerry League surprised many observers with a huge 5-1 over Limerick.

Check out all the Kerry League’s goals here;

Kerry’s Darren Aherne was very pleased afterwards, “Absolutely delighted with the effort and overall team performance. I would have taken a narrow win before the game, but to have won in the manner that we did was beyond my expectations, especially after we went behind after only 14 minutes.”

“Limerick were causing us plenty of problems with the way they played and their movement, especially in midfield. We levelled after 22 minutes from a set piece, through our centre back James Rusk (who fancies himself as a centre forward). It’s always pleasing to score from a corner considering it was an aspect of our play that was quite poor last season.”

“Our second came on just before half-time through Dillon Robinson, a great centre forwards goal. Good movement, good touch, took on the centre back and cut back onto his left and expertly finished.”

“Again delighted with the belief and desire to win shown by the team after going behind.”

“We spoke about some tactical issues at half time and the lads have put in a second half that they can all be proud of.”

“Martin Coughlan scored after 51 minutes with a nice finish. Adrai Miravat scored on 58 minutes, again with a run from midfield and some good combination play. John Hayes scored the 5th goal on 75 minutes again with a run and finish from midfield.”

“We had spoken about sharing the goal scoring at training ‪on Thursday night‬ and how we would get some midfielders on the scoresheet. To score 5 for the first time and to have 5 different scorers is fantastic. I’m thinking about talking about scoring 6 in every game this week to see will that work on Saturday against Wexford, don’t know if it will though,” said Aherne laughing.

“We travel to Wexford now on Saturday, they have been doing well recently so again another though assignment but we are enjoying everything at the moment.”

“Our next home fixture is ‪on Sunday 28th at 2pm‬ in Mounthawk Park, hopefully we will have a huge crowd to welcome the table toppers Shamrock Rovers and see can we get something out of that one, which will be difficult.”

Limerick’s Derek McCarthy said, “Very disappointing result especially considering the positive performance the week before against Cork.”

“We started well with Darragh Lowth scoring for the second week in a row. However some poor defending from a set piece, and a counter attack which we should have dealt with better, meant we trailed 2-1 at half time.”

“In hindsight changing to a 3-5-2 formation was a mistake on my behalf at half time. The lads failed to gain control of the game and in the end the 5-1 result reflected a very poor day at the office for us.”

McCarthy was very quick to praise opposing coach Daren Aherne, “Plenty of credit must go to Darren and his staff for the work they have done with the players. A really resilient and hard working group that got their rewards on Sunday. For us it’s back to the drawing board and reflect on what needs to improve going into a tough game versus Galway United next Monday.”

Photo Credits;

St Patrick’s Athletic

Monaghan/Cavan Football Partnership

Roberts Goggins (Shamrock Rovers)

Kerry district League


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