Bray People - - FRONT PAGE - DANIEL GOR­MAN at the Carlisle Grounds


NEW­TOWN UNITED re­sponded like a wounded an­i­mal to blitz their way to Jim McLaugh­lin Premier Tro­phy glory.

They fell be­hind af­ter 10 min­utes at a sun-soaked Carlisle Grounds but they re­tained their crown largely ow­ing to Dean Od­lum’s sub­lime 25-minute first half hat trick.

That al­lowed the Mag­pies to storm into a 4-1 lead at the in­ter­val and they main­tained that score­line through­out as Town were re­duced to 10 men in a sec­ond half that saw them show great fight­ing spirit, even if it was all in vain.

Truth be told, New­town were in a class of their own on Satur­day evening as they se­cured their sec­ond tro­phy of the sea­son against a Town side who des­per­ately missed their cap­tain Peter Fin­negan.

The Town de­fence were weather­ing a storm from as early as the fifth minute. Dean Od­lum dance into the area saw his far-post curler blocked as was Martin Wil­liams’ fol­low-up.

A loose pass from Shane Mooney was in­ter­cepted by John Con­nors and his pass al­lowed Richard Mur­phy to take aim but his daisy-cut­ter was turned around the post by a cau­tious Irah Red­mond.

Red­mond would throw cau­tion to the wind two min­utes later how­ever as Town hit the front. He had only just man­aged to scram­ble the ini­tial cor­ner kick be­hind but the sec­ond at­tempt saw him caught in no-man’s land and John Moore- house-Hay­den found the roof of the net with his header.

It re­quired two fine blocks from Town cap­tain Leonard Car­ton to keep out a Fitzsi­mons ef­fort and the re­bound as well but New­town would not be de­nied in the 18th minute.

It was worked to the right flank for Wil­liams. He in­jected pace and surged for­ward, Fitzsi­mons mis­con­trolled ini­tially but still had time to pick his spot and level.

And less than a minute later, it was New­town that led. Fitzsi­mons held it up be­fore play­ing a per­fectly weighed-pass through for Dean Od­lum steered it to Ken­neth Turner’s right and a weak hand from the goalkeeper was not enough to keep it out.

The trav­el­ling sup­port from the Matt Kelly Memo­rial Grounds were ec­static at such a quick turn­around and it just got bet­ter and bet­ter for them.

On 24 min­utes, Wil­liams de­liv­ered a cross that Fitzsi­mons nei­ther tamed nor threat­ened with but his touch on the ball but it fell to Dean Od­lum who in­stinc­tively swept it home.

It would have been 4-1 be­fore the half hour mark elapsed as Wil­lams’ strike looked set to nes­tle in the bot­tom cor­ner but Fitzsi­mons got in the way of it and couldn’t force it in.

Ross Od­lum, play­ing at cen­tre-half in place of the in­jured PJ Dowl­ing, roamed for­ward and had his run picked out ex­pertly by his brother but he was de­nied a lovely goal by a block from Turner.

Town hadn’t thrown in the towel and Mur­phy’s free kick forced Red­mond to claw the ball away from un­der his cross­bar but United had a hand and four fingers on the tro­phy by half-time cour­tesy of Od­lum’s hat-trick. His brother de­cided to lay things on for him on this oc­ca­sion and Ross’ chipped pass was ex­quis­ite, Dean’s touch wasn’t half bad ei­ther and the fin­ish was never in doubt.

Town went three at the back for the sec­ond pe­riod as they des­per­ate searched for a way to con­jure three goals but the fi­nal nail was put in their cof­fin when Bren­dan Cox saw red. Town felt they should have had a penalty in the 59th minute when the ball struck a New­town hand but Jame­son dis­agreed and Cox’s protest earned him an early shower.

This meant that the Mag­pies were able to rest Dean Od­lum for the ma­jor­ity of the sec­ond pe­riod and with­draw Matthew Kennedy – al­ready booked – as they al­lowed one eye to scan for­ward to the Wick­low Cup fi­nal; the third leg of this po­ten­tially amaz­ing tre­ble.

The dam­age could have been greater for the Fin­lay Park out­fit had United felt more ruth­less. A sub­lime fifth was al­most added as Wil­liams’ out­stand­ing 40 yards pass was matched by Dessie Wa­ters’ touch and skill to go past Johnny Car­ton but Turner de­nied him with a smart save at his near post. Top Form: Dean Od­lum (New­town United): Marking him is like nail­ing jelly to a wall. Scor­ers - New­town United A 4 (Fitzsi­mons 18, D. Od­lum 19,

24, 43), Wick­low Town 1 (Moore­house-Hay­den 10)

New­town United: 1. Irah Red­mond, 2. Ross Od­lum, 3. Neilly Martin, 4. PJ Dowl­ing, 5. Shane Mooney, 6. Matthew Kennedy, 7. Evan Moran, 8. Martin Wil­liams, 9. Mark Fitzsi­mons, 10. Dean Od­lum, 11. Sean Hef­fer­nan. Subs: Richard Franey for Dowl­ing (17); Dessie Wa­ters for D. Od­lum (53); Glenn Carthy for Kennedy (76).

Wick­low Town: 1. Ken­neth Turner, 2. Johnny Car­ton, 3. Ian Bran­ni­gan, 4. Thomas Kelly, 5. Leonard Car­ton, 6. John Con­nors, 7. Alan De­laney, 8. John Moore­house, 9. Gareth Mur­phy, 10. Richard Mur­phy, 11. Bren­dan Cox. Subs: Ed­die Cox for Moore­house (65); Oisin for Ref­eree: David Jame­son.

As­sis­tants: Frank Croas­dell & Owen White.

Ruby Od­lum raises her dad’s Man of the Match award.

Mick ‘Dirt’ Byrne, Kim Mooney, Ken­neth White and Cor­mac Anderson en­joy­ing the McLaugh­lin Cup fi­nal.

Jim McLaugh­lin presents the McLaugh­lin Cup to PJ Dowl­ing, cap­tain of New­town.

The vic­to­ri­ous New­town United squad af­ter their vic­tory in the Jim McLaugh­lin Cup fi­nal.

Wick­low Town’s Thomas Kelly pro­tects the ball from Sean Hef­fer­nan.

Wick­low’s Gareth Mur­phy un­der pres­sure from Shane Mooney.

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