Carrick Rovers

'in the community, for the community'

Rovers on top against understrength Clones side

Carrick Rovers 8-1 Clones Town
CMUL 14 Premier

Rovers 14's side faced an understrength Clones side at home on the Aces pitch. From the off Rovers pressed and after 5 minutes found the opening goal. A well worked move found Fionn O’Callaghan in space at the edge of the box and his pile-driver nestled into the bottom corner of the Clones net. The back four of Aaron Kearney, Tommy Byrne, Lee Butler and Cathal McEneany were well marshalled by Thomas Duane in goal, who seems to be taking on board the extra coaching received by Willie McNab from Glasgow Celtic F.C., encouraging the keeper to communicate with his back four.

The midfield four were now well on top with Lorcan Murnaghan and Fionn O’Callaghan pulling the strings in the middle and Liam Og Murray and Peter McElroy raiding down the wings. The two upfront of Sean Burns and Jerome Abekyamwale were causing the Clones defence all sorts of trouble. The second goal arrived on 12 minutes, from a corner Clones cleared the ball to the edge of the area, where Aaron Kearney met it first time and his half volley looped over the despairing dive of the Clones keeper. After 16 minutes Rovers were awarded a penalty, it was well struck, but at full stretch the keeper made a great save and was quick to block the follow up. This seemed to inspire Rovers on and the third goal arrived on 22 minutes when Liam Og Murray, who was having an inspired day on the left, fed Jerome. The power and pace of Jerome got him past the defence and his first time effort beat the keeper. At three up Rovers began to move the ball at ease and controlled large parts of the game, but to the Clones side’s credit they never gave up, forcing Thomas into two smart saves and he had to be strong to collect two great corners off the head off a Clones attacker. On 32 minutes Rovers added a fourth, with a real team goal. The ball was moved through eight outfield players before finding Sean Burns who easily beat the keeper. At this stage Rovers had introduced Dylan Ward, Ryan Nelson, Tadgh O'Callaghan and Bendera Abekyamwale into the fray. At half time Rovers were 4 – 0 up.

The second half started slowly for Rovers with a number of positional switches on the pitch. The Clones side took full advantage and 10 minutes into the half scored a cracker of a goal. The number 8 won possession some 25 yards out and on the half volley hit a scorcher with looped over the otherwise impressive Thomas into the top corner. This seemed to give Clones the impetus and belief they required and for the next 10 minutes they had a number of good efforts well saved by Thomas, tipping one effort brilliantly over the bar. With18 minutes of the second half gone, Rovers added a fifth, the ball was worked to Tommy Byrne some 10 yards out and he drilled his effort past the exposed keeper. Rovers were now back in control added another shortly after, with Jerome picking up a loose ball and drilling it past the keeper. Next up was Peter McElroy, who collected a ball from Cathal and beat the keeper. The pick of the bunch was saved for the end. Tommy picked the ball up wide on the left, drifted past a number of Clones defenders before unleashing a shot from the left edge of the penalty box that dipped into the far top corner. Rovers were happy to hear the final whistle, with both sides pushing hard for a goal and the score flattering the home side. Well done to both sets’ of players for putting in a good shift and playing the game in the right spirit.