A brace of goals in the first half from David O’Sullivan inflicted an eighth league defeat on bottom side Cobh Ramblers as Longford claimed their first league win in a month.
The division’s leading goalscorer last season broke the deadlock in the 28th minute and then grabbed his and his side’s second goal 11 minutes later. For all the chances they had throughout this game Town should’ve won by more and were guilty of poor finishing.
This young Cobh side have been struggling this season and because of the amount of Leaving Cert students unavailable to them on Saturday night they could only name three substitutes. They gave a debut to defender Christopher McGarry and it was a real baptism of fire for him coming up against the lethal O’Sullivan and his strike partner Gary Shaw.
Town dominated the early exchanges and created chances inside the opening quarter. The best opportunity fell in the 6th minute; Stephen Rice’s powerful effort came off the butt of the post, the ball came back out to Shaw but he directed his shot wide.
Minutes later O’Sullivan’s low shot went across the face of the goal. In the 27th minute and against the run of play Jonathan Spillane had a chance but Town defender Pat Flynn did well to come back and clear the danger.
One minute later and Town opened the scoring with the Wicklow boys combining; left-back Willie Tyrrell played precise pass to O’Sullivan who from a tight angle found the back of the net with a fantastic strike that gave Robert Birdsall no chance.
Town had a few half chances before they doubled their advantage in the 39th minute when O’Sullivan finished from just inside the box.
Three minutes from the break the home side had a chance to get their third goal; O’Sullivan squandered a good opportunity but the loose ball fell to winger Jamie Mulhall who shot wide when in a good position.
It was all Town as they continued to pile on the pressure. O’Sullivan created another chance for them eight minutes into the 2nd half but his attempt was well saved by Cobh netminder Birdsall. Another chance then went a-begging for the Town with Shaw’s effort off target one minute later.
In the 56th minute Rice found himself in a good position but blasted his effort over the bar. Cobh had the ball in the back of the net in the 69th minute but it was ruled out for offside. It came about when a poor Town clearance ricocheted off Alan O’Flynn and ended up in the net with the player being knocked to the ground in the process. Rice then sliced his effort wide in the 81st minute when in front of goal.
In the 84th minute Cobh had another good chance when they caught Town on the break but Ryan Goldsmith’s shot was cleared off the line by Flynn. Down the other end O’Sullivan headed Etanda Nkololo’s cross wide in the 87th minute.
Longford Town: Paul Hunt; Pat Sullivan, Noel Haverty, Pat Flynn, Willie Tyrrell; James Mulhall (Etanda Nkololo 56), Stephen Rice, Mark Salmon (Rhys Gorman 68), Kevin O’Connor; Gary Shaw (Peter Hynes 78), David O’Sullivan.
Subs not used: Chris Bennion (gk), Sean Russell, Glen O'Connor, Lorcan Shannon.
Cobh Ramblers: Robert Birdsall; Eoin Hastings, Brendan Frahill, Christopher McCarthy, Martin Deady; Ryan Goldsmith, George Gill, Roy Kenny, Anthony O’Donnell (Rob Lynch 79); Alan O’Flynn, Jonathan Spillane.
Subs not used: Shane Hallahan (gk), Keith O'Flynn.
Referee: John McLoughlin (Athlone)