Town shock Crum­lin to reach the last eight

SOC­CER F.A.I. IN­TER­ME­DI­ATE CUP FOURTH ROUND

Bray People - - Sport -

Crum­lin United 0, Ark­low Town 1: Ark­low Town caused a ma­jor sur­prise on Sun­day last when knock­ing out reign­ing Le­in­ster Se­nior League cham­pi­ons Crum­lin United in the fourth round of the F.A.I. In­ter­me­di­ate Cup.

The fa­mous Dublin club were hotly tipped to win this sea­son’s com­pe­ti­tion, sec­ond only in stature to the FAI Se­nior Cup it­self, and hav­ing been granted a home tie in the last six­teen against lower league op­po­nents they were fan­cied to progress.

How­ever, Ark­low are a team in form, bat­tling on two fronts for hon­ours now, in both league and cup, and they were keen to show the large crowd at Crum­lin’s Sun­drive Park that they were wor­thy op­po­nents hav­ing dis­patched a fan­cied Mount Mer­rion in the pre­vi­ous round.

Ark­low matched their il­lus­tri­ous op­po­nents early on, with both sides play­ing a nice pass­ing game around the all-weather sur­face.

In­deed, Town cre­ated the bet­ter open­ings with both Kenny Keogh and Wil­lie Doyle test­ing the home keeper. Crum­lin’s best chances came via set-pieces but they were un­able to breach a well mar­shalled Ark­low de­fence, led by Kevin Far­rell and Danny O’Hart, who has been noth­ing short of su­perb in Town’s de­fence since re­turn­ing from in­jury.

Town goal­keeper Craig Brit­ton was alert to early dan­ger in the sec­ond-half as the Crum­lin num­ber nine pounced on a loose ball and drove at the Ark­low keeper.

Town’s James Dixon and cap­tain Daragh Mur­ray both went close with headed ef­forts as Town con­tin­ued to match the home side and frus­tra­tion was telling on the Dublin side, with time run­ning out and a re­play loom­ing. Ten min­utes from time, the key mo­ment that swung the game in Ark­low’s favour ar­rived.

Striker Wil­lie Doyle ran on to a through ball and was felled by the home side’s keeper in the area. The ref­eree had no hes­i­ta­tion in point­ing to the spot and in­deed the Crum­lin keeper was for­tu­nate not to be dis­missed, be­ing the last line of de­fence.

In­stead, he was cau­tioned and al­lowed to re­main in goal to face the pres­sure spot kick. Doyle re­mained com­posed though as he coolly sent the keeper the wrong way, giv­ing Town a de­served lead.

Crum­lin, as ex­pected, threw cau­tion to the wind but were un­able to cre­ate any chances, with the Ark­low side hold­ing firm and se­cur­ing a very fa­mous win.

Town now go into the hat for the quar­ter-fi­nals of the FAI In­ter­me­di­ate Cup and can take im­mese sat­is­fac­tion see­ing their name along­side il­lus­tri­ous op­po­nents. The push for pro­mo­tion recom­mences this com­ing week­end when Town play host to TEK on Fri­day night at Bridgewater Cen­tre Park.

Goalscorer Wille Doyle.

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