Date: 7:45 p.m. March 5, 2010
Venue: The Brandywell
Att: Unknown

Emmet Friars 65' -
Scored: 65'

Scored: 47'
- Davin O'Neill 47'

Derry City 1-1 Cork City FORAS Co-op

Sat, Mar 06 2010


Article courtesy of the The Sunday Journal and Andrew Quinn

Derry City's relationship with the highs and lows continued on Friday night against Cork City FORAS Co-op at the Brandywell. On the upside, over 3,000 fans attended the game but were to be disappointed as the season opener finished 1-1.

The clash between the two demoted teams was a bit a like the New York pension investment fund for the North of Ireland in that it promised a whole lot but frustratingly, it fell way short of the mark. Cork took the lead through a stunning strike from Davin O'Neill in the second half but Derry debutant, Emmett Friars equalised for his hometown club just after the hour mark.

For the first 20 minutes of the game it was like watching two ageing heavyweight boxers of yesteryear trade punch for punch and jab for jab. Sadly there was to be no knock-out punch.

The first piece of action of worth occurred in the 29th minute when James McLean broke free of Ian Turner on the left to pass to the waiting Barry Molloy just outside the 18 yard box. Molloy’s effort on goal lacked any real direction and went well wide of the Cork goal.

As the game progressed Derry winger James McLean started to impose his superior strength and pace on Cork full-back Ian Turner.

In the 32nd minute McLean left Turner in his wake but his cross was finger tipped away by Cork ‘keeper Mark McNulty and the ball was eventually scooped away from danger by former Derry City defender Dave Rogers.

Derry forward, Vinnie Sweeney was the first player to get a shot on target when his headed effort from inside the area was comfortably caught by McNulty in the 33rd minute.

The Rebel Men’s first attempt of the evening came courtesy of a Greg O’Halloran header in the 38th minute. As Eoin Forde took the corner on the right former Candy Stripe O’Halloran rose in front of the Derry defence only to see his effort easily gathered by Doherty.

Cork's style of play and choice of tactics were predictable. The Turner's Cross outfit played very cautiously throughout and it was understandable as manager Tommy Dunne was only able to name two substitutes. In recent days the Dubliner has signed several new players but because of registration problems they were not permitted to play.

Cork took the lead in the 49th minute by way of a majestic finish by former Cobh Ramblers midfielder Davin O’Neill. William Heffernan dropped the ball into the Derry area on the right and O’Neill’s deft touch lifted the ball over the head of Doherty and it nestled in the far corner of the net.

Derry second half substitute Stephen Parkhouse attempted a cheeky lob from just outside the Cork area in the 58th minute. Sadly for the Derry debutant his effort travelled wide.

Derry responded with a goal of their own in the 63rd minute when full-back Emmett Friars headed past McNulty.

Cork gave away a needless a free kick on the left and Ruairi Harkin’s delivery was exceptional. At the perfect height the ball whizzed in front of the Cork six-yard-box for Friars to head home the equaliser.

Referee Paul Tuite dismissed Derry’s claims for a penalty in the 82nd minute. As Stephen Parkhouse appeared to fall foul of a Dave Rogers challenge Tuite signalled that the Liverpudlian defender had made contact with the ball and none with the player.

Parkhouse tested the reflexes of McNulty in injury time when he flicked on Mark Scoltock's deep pass with a delicate header. Despite the Derry man's best efforts McNulty caught the ball and soon after Tuite blew the final whistle.

In essence, a draw was a fair result. Cork had clearly heeded the fact that Derry had a greater squad to call upon and with it being the opening game of the new season there was a sense of the indestructible.

Be that as it may, Cork defended tremendously. The former Derry City duo of Greg O'Halloran and Dave Rogers negated Derry's attacking prowess. Each cross and pass into the area was as quickly cleared as it was dispatched.

Derry's next game will take place next Friday when they will make the 450 mile round trip to take on Limerick FC at Jackman Park.

Extratime Man of the Match: James McLean – (Derry City) - The young Creggan Heights midfielder will turn 22 next month but after his performance on Friday evening it's clear to see that he has already come of age. Great pace and energy. A key player for Derry going forward.

Derry City: Gerard Doherty; Eddie McCallion, Emmett Friars, Mark McChrystal, Mark Scoltock; Shane McEleney (Stephen Parkhouse 53mins), Ruairi Harkin, James McLean, Barry Molloy; Vinnie Sweeny (Darren Cassidy 76 mins), Mark Farren.
Subs not used: Eugene Ferry, Seamus Sharkey, David McDaid.

Cork City FORAS Co-op FC: Mark McNulty; Ian Turner, Dave Rogers, Stephen Mulcahy, Greg O’Halloran; Davin O’Neill, Paul Deasy, Cillian Lordan, Graham Cummins; Eoin Forde, William Heffernan.
Subs not used: Wesley Tong, John Dineen.

Referee: Mr. Paul Tuite (Dublin).

Attendance: 3,000

Derry City
Gerard Doherty
Mark Scoltock
Mark McChrystal
Eddie McCallion
Emmet Friars
65Scored: 65'
Barry Molloy
Shane McEleney
James McClean
Ruairi Harkin
Vinny Sweeney
Mark Farren

Seamus Sharkey
Stephen Parkhouse
David McDaid
Eugene Ferry
Darren Cassidy
Cork City Foras Co-op
Mark McNulty
Ian Turner
Greg O'Halloran
Stephen Mulcahy
Davin O'Neill
47Scored: 47'
Cillian Lordan
Willie Heffernan
Eoin Forde
Paul Deasy
Graham Cummins

John Dineen

Photo Gallery for Derry City -v- Cork City Foras Co-op