McGrain seals win

Late strike sees off keen Carnew Celtic

Bray People - - SPORT - DANIEL GOR­MAN At Fas­saroe


McGrain 78


FAS­SAROE YC kept their ti­tle hopes alive and kick­ing thanks to Stephen McGrain's late win­ner which fi­nally broke Carnew United's im­pres­sive re­solve.

A record of six losses in seven games sug­gested that the vis­i­tors would not be caus­ing the ti­tle hope­fuls from Bray too much dif­fi­culty but the men with former Os­car Traynor boss De­clan Greene on the side­line were in for an un­pleas­ant sur­prise.

United dug in and had an an­swer for ev­ery­thing the hosts threw at them un­til the 78th minute when Stephen McGrain, guilty of spurn­ing some gilt-edged op­por­tu­ni­ties ear­lier in the con­test, fi­nally found his shoot­ing boots to kill off the Di­vi­sion 3 bat­tlers.

It looked like a trounc­ing could be on the cards when with just three min­utes on the clock Fas­saroe's Adam Moore­house re­leased McGrain with a cool flick with the out­side of his left foot. McGrain's fin­ish though was any­thing but cool. The striker skipped past 17 year old goal­keeper Mark Walsh but then hav­ing done the hard part; he fluffed his ef­fort and sent it wide.

Fas­saroe had to wait 17 more min­utes for their next op­por­tu­nity. A free kick was awarded 25 yards out and to the right of the Carnew penalty area but none­the­less Moore­house's vi­cious ef­fort had to be palmed away by Walsh. Allen Har­ris col­lected the re­bound and crossed for McGrain, who's shot was blocked on the line by a sea of Carnew bod­ies.

Har­ris' de­liv­er­ies caused an­other prob­lem in the 28th minute when John Graney met it with a pow­er­ful con­nec­tion but he was foiled by Carnew de­fender Mick Doyle who had timed his slid­ing block to per­fec­tion.

The siege on the vis­it­ing goal didn't halt there. Graney's pass should have been cut out by the Carnew de­fence but for once they weren't at the top of their game and the ball rolled through for McGrain. The striker had the goal at his mercy but in­stead he con­trived to side-foot wide and as he stood with his head in his hands it told its own story.

Frus­tra­tion was be­gin­ning to eek into the home side's game as the Carnew de­fence grew and grew in con­fi­dence. The dead­lock was al­most bro­ken very early in the sec­ond pe­riod when Graney spun smartly into space but he was de­nied by a fine stop by the legs of Walsh.

Hav­ing been un­der the cosh from the first whis­tle, the Back Al­ley club stole up the other end and al­most took a shock lead on 56 min­utes. Some fine work by Quentin Hosey re­sulted in him whip­ping in a cross from the left that Mau­rice Kinsella flicked on but the ball zipped men­ac­ingly past the far post, much to the re­lief of Daniel Gaynor in the Fas­saroe net.

This Carnew side are a very in­ex­pe­ri­enced one, with most play­ers look­ing likely to strug­gle to get served in an off-li­cense and this youth­ful­ness told at stages. When older, wiser heads would have used games­man­ship to eat up pre­cious min­utes, the young guns were con­stantly op­er­at­ing at full speed.

And their naivety cost them in the end when Graney landed the all im­por­tant killing blow with 12 min­utes re­main­ing. Walsh's punt was headed off Kinsella and in a flash Graney had been re­leased and this time the Fas­saroe hot-shot kept his cool to squeeze home a low ef­fort past Walsh.

Carnew United tried des­per­ately to sal­vage a point; chang­ing to a more at­tack­ing for­ma­tion for the re­main­ing min­utes but they re­turned home with noth­ing to show for their coura­geous ef­forts.

That win al­lows Fas­saroe to leapfrog Avon­more FC B into fifth and they keep to within five points of joint lead­ers Fair­wood Celtic and Sham­rock Celtic. Carnew United's am­bi­tions are a lot more mod­est. They still lan­guish down in 11th spot but they should set their sights on catch­ing MK Dons and win­ning the 'best of the rest' cat­e­gory.

Top Form: Steven Byrne (Carnew United): Su­perb show­ing from the cen­tre half. Didn't put a foot wrong.


1. Daniel Gaynor, 2. James John­son, 3. Cathal Doyle, 4. Sean McA­teer, 5. Ger Wat­ters (Booked), 6. Willy Cox, 7. Allen Har­ris, 8. Dar­ren Devlin, 9. Adam Moore­house, 10. Stephen McGrain, 11. John Graney. SUB: Scott O'Neill for Graney (71). Not used: Stephen O'Neill, Scott Meaney, Pearce De­vitt.


1. Mark Walsh, 2. Robert Moules, 3. Mick Doyle, 4. Steven Byrne, 5. Jack Kear­ney (Booked), 6. Jonathan Smith, 7. Lee Molloy, 8. Jimmy Davis, 9. Robert Young, 10. Mau­rice Kinsella, 11. Quentin Hosey. SUB: Martin Doyle for Hosey (72). Not used: Matt Eude.

VENUE: Fas­saroe Com­mu­nity Cen­tre

REF­EREE: Mick Quinn

The Fas­saroe YC team who de­feated Carnew United in the Di­vi­sion 3 clash at Fas­saroe Com­mu­nity Grounds.

Fas­saroe’s Willy Cox watches as his shot goes wide af­ter he had done great work to get past the Carnew keeper Mark Walsh and de­fender Robert Moules.

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