SD Galway 2 - 1 Mervue UnitedSat, Aug 11 2012
SD Galway registered only their second win of the season as they recorded back to back Galway city derby wins over neighbours Mervue United with a goal in either half at Eamonn Deacy Park on Friday night.
Goals from Brian Gaffney and Brian Geraghty were enough for the home side against a Mervue side who played the entire game without showing any real urgency after going behind twice and also gaining a man advantage when former player Nicky Curran saw red mid-way through the second half.
The opening half didn’t produce too much in the way of excitement as neither keeper was fully tested in the first 40 minutes or so. Jakub Tomanica did well on 11 minutes when he got the better of Michael McSweeney on the left before cutting in and striking an effort straight at Connor Gleeson.
The hosts won the first corner on 20 minutes and Ronan Conlon delivered a good ball into the danger area were Brian Geraghty flicked the ball to Eugene Greaney but the defender blasted his effort high and over. Mervue responded with Jason Molloy picking out Stephen Walsh but he headed wide under pressure from Cian Fadden.
Tomanica picked out Geraghty at the other end on 25 minutes but he also headed his effort wide of Gleeson’s goals. The game continued to be a scrappy affair with referee Sean Grant intent on breaking up play with his constant whistle blowing halting play.
Just when it looked like a scoreless first half was on the cards the home side broke the deadlock two minutes before the interval. Mervue were caught on the break as SD Galway broke from defence with Tominica and the striker drew the visitors cover before slipping the ball to the supporting Brian Gaffney who slotted the ball between the legs of Connor Gleeson for 1-0.
On the stroke of half time Mervue’s Gary Kelly had a good strike saved down low by James Keane before Mike Elwood missed a great chance to level matters in first half injury time. Marc Ludden launched a long throw into the box which Keane flapped at dropping the ball at the feet of Elwood who hooked the ball over the crossbar with the keeper out of position.
The visitors did draw level 10 minutes after the break but not before Keane produced a magnificent save tipping a rasping strike from Gary Kelly over his crossbar for a corner on 55 minutes. From that dead ball Molloy’s delivery was cleared only as far as Noel Varley on the edge of the box and the midfielder played an intelligent low ball back into the six yard box which Damien O’Rourke back healed to the net for 1-1.
Ten minutes later and SD Galway were back in front when Mike Harty played a great ball through the middle to Geraghty who controlled brilliantly before firing the ball into the corner past Gleeson for what turned out to be a winning strike.
A minute later and a late tackle from Nicky Curran on Noel Varley resulted in the full back receiving a second yellow card as the home team found themselves down to ten men. To their credit they re-shuffled with Tomanica dropping into midfield as they defended in numbers to ensure a precious three points.
Mervue lacked that urgency to force themselves back into the game but they should have levelled when Stephen Walsh missed a great chance on 76 minutes. Pat Hoban did well on the ball and played a lovely pass to put Molloy into the box and the winger’s shot was blocked with the ball dropping to Walsh unmarked at the back post but he couldn’t direct the ball into an empty net.
In the final minutes the visitors did put some pressure on Keane’s goal with Varley heading sub Dan Cunningham’s left wing cross wide, while Cunningham then flashed a header from a Molloy free-kick across the face of Keane’s goal with no Mervue player on hand to provide a much needed finish.
As the game entered injury time sub Etanda Nkololo did well on the right and then saw his in swinging cross strike the post, while Molloy fired another shot wide as the home side held on for a second win of the season and both have been over their cross town rivals.
SD Galway: James Keane; Nicky Curran, Eugene Greaney, Paddy Quinlan, Cian Fadden, Ronan Conlon, Willie Enubele, Mike Harty, Brian Gaffney; Brian Geraghty (Enda Curran 82), Jakub Tomanica (Luke McConnell 86).
Subs not used: Ronan Burke (GK), Timmy Molloy, Colm Horgan, David O'Connell, Evan Lee.
Booked: Greaney (38), N Curran (58).
Sent Off: N Curran (67)
Mervue United: Connor Gleeson; Michael McSweeney, Marc Ludden, Damien O’Rourke (Etanda Nkololo 78), Mike Elwood; Tom King (Dan Cunningham 78), Noel Varley, Gary Kelly (Cian McBrien 61), Jason Molloy; Stephen Walsh, Pat Hoban.
Subs not used: Ronan Forde (GK), Alex Lee, Brian Connolly, Jean Biansumba,
Booked: G Kelly (27), O’Rourke (54), McBrien (92).
Referee: Sean Grant (Wexford).
Extratime.ie Man of the Match – Jakub Tomanica (SD Galway).