Greystones win the Charlie Byrne Cup
GREYSTONES UNITED lifted the Charlie Byrne Cup after beating Shamrock Celtic in a tough cup final at Celtic Park on Saturday afternoon.
Shamrock Celtic were hoping to add to their silverware this season and continue their winning form after claiming the Division 3 title last weekend, but they found themselves behind after only six minutes played.
Greystones were awarded a free-kick just after the halfway line, the free-kick was floated into the penalty area which Celtic failed to clear and left striker Dave O’Sullivan unmarked to smash the ball past Tommy Sullivan in goal to give his side the lead.
Shamrock were slow in transition from defence to attack in the first 20 minutes of the game and were failing to provide many chances for their strikers Darren Collopy and Michael Hodgkinson, but they gained more confidence as time grew on.
Celtic had a great chance to level the scoring on the 25th minute when a mistake at the backline between Dan Byrne and Bartoz Stenka in the Greystones goal almost gifted an equaliser for Hodgkinson but Stenka made a great recovery to clear the ball.
Shamrock Celtic kept pushing for a way back into the game as they began to get their tricky wingers Scott Meaney and Kev Murray into the game by playing long balls over the Greystones defence.
Murray thought he had grabbed a goal back on the half hour mark when he got on the end of a Phillip Gill long ball to force the ball over the line as he jumped and challenged Stenka in goal.
Murray ran off celebrating with his team mates but referee Shay Byrne ruled out the goal after speaking to his linesman Karl Doyle.
Just before half-time they finally got their goal when they were awarded a penalty after Darren Collopy was tripped in the box.
Midfielder Aidan O’Neill stepped up and slotted the penalty to the bottom corner and the sides went in at half-time with the score level.
Five minutes into the second half United found themselves back in front.
This time it was O’Sullivan who was assisting the goal; O’Sullivan fought his way through the Celtic defence before playing through Oisin Keogh who curled it into the top corner.
A great finish from the winger to put his side back in front.
Celtic were desperate to get themselves back in the game as they began to push players forward to try and get an equalising goal, this gave Greystones many opportunities to go on the counter-attack.
Despite Shamrock being under pressure from their opponents they got their leveller through defender Colin Cassidy in the 68th minute.
Cassidy had pushed forward for a corner-kick and reacted quickest in the penalty area to volley home the corner from winger Scott Meaney.
Unfortunately for Shamrock Celtic they were dealt a huge blow as they had to continue the rest of the game with only ten men after winger Scott Meaney was shown a red card for dissent.
Greystones having the extra man made the remainder of the game difficult for Celtic and they failed to threaten the United goal.
Greystones had wave after wave of attack as they looked for a winning goal. Substitute Danny Walters was introduced late on to try and unlock the Shamrock Celtic defence.
Eight minutes from time United had their winner, Oisin Keogh found the back of the net after Mark McHugh slipped him through to score the winning goal.
After the game Greystones United coach Martin McDevitt gave his thoughts on the game.
‘We started the game quite sloppy in defence. We wanted to play the ball out from the back and keep the possession but it was difficult at times because they are a good side. I thought we moved the ball well in the second half, we have a very young team here and we’re very happy to be lifting the cup,’ he said.
It was a tough cup final for both sides with little chances at either end.
United looked like they might go on and score more goals and put the game to bed early in the second half but Celtic fought back and, on another day, might have brought the game to extra-time but United held firm and kept out the late pressure from Celtic to be crowned this season’s Charlie Byrne Cup champions. SHAMROCK CELTIC: 1. Tommy Sullivan,
2. Phillip Gill, 3. Rob Gilespe, 4. Greg Doyle, 5. Colin Cassidy, 6. Aidan O’ Neill,
7. Scott Meaney, 8. Eric Dunne, 9. Michael Hodgkinson, 10. Darren Collopy, 11. Kevin Murray. Subs: Ingard Hansen for Kevin Murray (65min)
GREYSTONES: 1. Bartoz Stenka, 2. Dan Byrne, 3. Joe Gerrard, 4. Munvro Gbrebrivj, 5. Sean Minogue, 6. Jayson Healy,
7. Mark McHugh, 8. Jack O’Toole, 9. Kyle Howard, 10. Dave O’Sullivan, 11. Oisin Keogh. Subs: Danny Walters for Dave O’Sullivan (68min)
REFEREE: Shay Byrne