Town shock Crumlin to reach the last eight
SOCCER F.A.I. INTERMEDIATE CUP FOURTH ROUND
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.