By Kevin Dooney
Cabinteely 1 Shelbourne 3
Speed once again proved Cabinteely’s undoing as Shelbourne ran out 3-1 winners in Friday night’s match at Stradbrook.
Coming off the back of a 4-1 defeat to UCD, the home side would have hoped to bounce back; but a quality visiting team had different ideas.
The hosts did start brightly with Kieran Marty Waters sliding a ball to Ben Hanrahan, who could only skew his shot wide in the fifth minute.
Danger signs of what was to come were there early doors as Shane Farrell was often picked out on the right wing by away goalkeeper Brendan Clarke.
The Drumcondra outfit looked a constant threat on break. No more so than when on 25 minutes, Dayle Rooney’s ball found an open Shane Farrell, running freely between the opposing centre backs. Dean Casey tracked across from left back but when he left a leg dangling, Farrell was all too happy to go down and ask a question of referee Alan Patchell.
The match official duly answered by pointing to the spot. Michael O’Connor sent keeper Adam Hayden the wrong way as he slotted in the bottom left corner.
Cabinteely did create one chance in response as Marty Waters found an overlapping Casey on the left flank. The left-back successfully cut back inside but his final effort was ultimately tame.
Shels added to that lead in the 38th minute a long ball from Clarke again found Farrell on the right flank. The winger’s first touch took him infield and proceeded to curl the ball with the outside of his right foot into the top corner.
A double half time substitution for Cabo saw Deane Watters and Eoin McPhillips come into central midfield in place of Alex Aspil and Sean McDonald.
Their introduction did provide a shift in White and Green’s mentality as they kept the ball better in the half, but still lacked the cutting edge to trouble Clarke. Long balls were dealt with all night long by the towering figures of Ally Gilchrest and Maxim Kouogun at the back for the Reds.
Despite Cabo’s efforts the match was effectively ended as a contest on 68 minutes when Kevin O’Connor’s free kick took a deflection off the jumping home wall, once again leaving Hayden to pick the ball out of his net through no fault of his own.
The home faithful did have some small consolation to smile about after 83 minutes as Green Line graduate Jem Campion provided a consolation goal. Kouogun completely sliced an attempted clearance sending the ball high in the night sky. The young striker kept his composure to send a looping header past an onrushing Clarke from 15 yards out.
There is little time to regain composure as next week Cabo travel to top of the table Athlone.
Pat Devlin can only hope some key players return from injury. Especially as record appearance holder Kevin Knight talked himself into the referee’s book after the final whistle. This time seeing red after the 90 minutes, which will most likely result in him missing next week’s tie.
Cabinteely FC: Adam Hayden; Luke McWilliams, Kevin Knight, Dean Casey (Niall Barnes 71), Daniel Blackbyrne (c); Jordan Payne (Luke Clucas 86), Zak O’Neill, Ben Hanrahan (Jem Campion 71), Alex Aspil (Deane Watters 46); Marty Waters, Sean McDonald (Eoin McPhillips 46).
Subs not used: Conor Knight, Joe Hyland, Ben Clarke, Mitchell Byrne.
Booked: Dan Blackbyrne (22), Dean Casey (35), Kevin Knight (44), Eoin McPhillips (59), Luke McWilliams (90).
Sent off: Kevin Knight (90+4).
Shelbourne: Brendan Clarke; Michael Barker, Ally Gilchrist, Maxim Kouogun, Kevin O’Connor (c); Shane Farrell (John Ross Wilson 85), JJ Lunney, Brian McManus (Sean Quinn 75), Dayle Rooney (David Toure 85); Glen McAuley (Yoyo Mahdy 69), Michael O’Connor (Ryan Brennan 75).
Subs not used: Luke Byrne, Alex Cetiner, Kyle O’Connor.
Booked: Brian McManus (21), Kevin O’Connor (45) JJ Lunney (87).
Referee: Alan Patchell.