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Dessie Baker - Goal (3')
Gary Twigg - Goal (30')
James Chambers - Goal (50')
Chris Turner - Goal (70')
James Chambers - Goal (72')
Garry Sheahan - Goal (13')
David Breen - Yellow Card (45')
For a while Rovers threatened to overwhelm their First Division
opponents. Pat Flynn found plenty of room down the right and Stephen
Rice got on the end of two crosses, failing to threaten the goal on
Then, after thirteen minutes, Wexford fashioned an unlikely equaliser.
A long ball from Dean Broaders deceived the back-pedalling Dan Murray
and Garry Sheahan slipped in behind him to lob Alan Manus from 20
This signalled a period of dominance for the visitors that was as
entertaining as it was profound. Crisp passing all over the field and
devastating pace from Danny Furlong and Sheahan had Rovers in a state
of utter confusion.
Sheahan hit the post from a tight angle, Kevin Rowe attempted a
curling shot from the left flank and Furlong nutmegged Murray inside
the box before his advance was finally blocked off.
For twenty minutes the only moment of concern was a free kick from
Baker that found Gary Twigg all alone at the back post, his header
into the danger area cleared by David Breen. But it was a warning
Wexford should have heeded.
On the half hour mark Danny Murphy broke down the left, got the better
of the covering Jimmy Keohane and crossed for Gary Twigg to dispatch a
simple but perfect header to the net.
If there was room to question Rovers advantage based on the balance
of play, there was little doubt that Wexford were the architects of
their own demise. Their inability to cope with high balls into the box
had proved decisive and they suffered again after five minutes of the
Dessie Baker put in a cross from the right that centre back, Chris
Kenny simply headed back into the danger zone. Dennehy knocked a
simple ball back to James Chambers who passed the ball into the
unguarded left corner of the net.
Wexford almost pulled one back in the 62nd minute when Garry Sheahan
chased a through ball to the edge of the Rover’s box where Alan Manus
had to head clear. The ball fell to Keohane some 35 yards from goal
and his lob was almost perfect, pitching onto the top of the crossbar
before bouncing over.
Rovers took the hint and redoubled their efforts. Chris Turner came on
for Robert Bayly and eight minutes later he met another Baker cross at
the back post, thumping it into the net from a tight angle.
At that point Baker left to warm applause, replaced by Thomas Stewart
and Danny Murphy took over the role of provider. The Corkman delivered
a cross from the left that Stewart touched on and James Chambers drove
hone from fifteen yards. The game was well and truly up for Wexford.
To their credit they fought on, Sheahan impressing with his pace and
persistence, beating Manus on the edge of the box after 76 minutes
before a sliding Dan Murray denied him on the goal line.
With moments left to play referee, Tommy Connolly, declined to give
the Hoops a clear penalty when Breen handled inside the area, perhaps
encapsulating the feeling that the hard working and at times
impressive Wexford side had had enough punishment for the evening.
Shamrock Rovers: Alan Manus; Pat Flynn, Craig Sives, Dan
Murray, Danny Murphy;Sean O’Connor (Billy Dennehy, 33), Stephen Rice,
Robert Bayly (Chris Turner, 62), James Chambers; Dessie Baker (Thomas
Stewart, 71), Gary Twigg.?Subs not used: Robert Duggan,
Enda Stevens, Aidan Price, Stephen Bradley,
Wexford Youths: Packie Holden; Chris Kenny, David Breen,
Anthony Wolfe, Dean Broaders (Martin Kehoe, 88); Jimmy Keohane, Shane
Sinnott (Aidan McCann, 81), Shane Dempsey, Kevin Rowe (Michael Mullen,
66); Danny Furlong, Garry Sheahan.?Subs not used: Pa
Doyle, John Byrne, Gareth McCurtain, Lee Aust.
Bookings: David Breen.
extratime.ie Man of the Match: Dessie Baker.
Referee: Tommy Connolly??Attendance: 1500
Simon O'Gorman began reporting for Extratime in 2010. He remembers Milltown and Flower Lodge and, back in the mists of time, saw Diego Maradona play at Lansdowne Road. He now lives in Co Kildare and reports on Shamrock Rovers among others. Simon can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org