Letterkenny Rovers well-beaten by Drogheda United in Airtricity U-19 League of Ireland
LETTERKENNY ROVERS’ ASPIRATIONS OF a first win in this season’s Airtricity U-19 League of Ireland were dashed by Drogheda United at Leckview Park this afternoon.
Letterkenny Rovers 1-6 Drogheda United
Rovers came into this game looking for a reaction to their 13-0 defeat at home to Dundalk seven days previously and started the game with an intensity level which suggested they may have an appropriate response with a stronger tenacity and competitive edge.
The home side though did weather an early storm and home goalkeeper Shane Graham did well to deny Conor Byrne with a super stop on eight minutes before Craig D’Arcy should have scored for Drogs on 22 minutes but he shot high over the bar when well placed.
David Tyrell then denied Matthew Keogh with a superb block before Rovers really took the game by the scruff of the neck for the rest of the opening period and had the visiting defence rattled for sustained periods.
Conor Matthewson had a goalbound shot blocked by Dale Harding while Naoise Ó Baoills high pressure industrious work was causing problems for the Drogs backline before Rovers deservedly went ahead on 40 minutes.
Conor Matthewson latched onto a Dylan Sweeney throughball and his shot was well saved by visiting goalkeeper also called Dylan Sweeney but from the resulting corner Rovers worked a smart routine between Conor Blaney and Naoise Ó Baoill before they found Oran Hilley and his effort from the angle of the box sailed over Sweeney in the Boynesiders goal for a wonderful goal
Oisin Roper should have doubled the lead just two minutes later as Rovers attacked with ease but he just could not connect properly after a loose pass from the Drogs right back D’Arcy.
Drogs almost snatched an equaliser before the interval and forced Shane Graham into a wonderful stop from Dominic Mahons long range effort but it was the hosts who were ahead at the break.
Hopes were high that Rovers could gain a morale boosting win but those hopes were dashed with Drogheda scoring quickfire goals on 54 and 58 minutes to completely turn the game on its head.
On 54 minutes David Tyrrell appeared to be fouled in midfield but play was waved on and it fell to Mark Doyle and after the flame haired wingers initial shot was well saved by Graham he was first to react to the rebound and headed into the bottom corner.
Just four minutes later Rovers believed they should have had a handball while on the attack but again play was waved on and Nathan Seery found Lee Partridge and after Conor Blaney slipped on the greasy surface Partridge had all the time in the world to beat Graham at his near post.
Rovers were shell-shocked and Drogheda gained in confidence and ruled the roost for the remainder of the game and got the insurance goal on 72 minutes when Partridge fired home following an exquisite throughball from Eoghan Dempsey.
The home side looked physically and mentally tired after that and a goal from Ross Nally on 78 minutes capped a fine second half display from Drogs which maybe was given a flattering look when they scored another two goals deep into injury time through Doyle and Nally again.
it could be a long tough season for Rovers in this seasons league after a number of years being quite competitive while Drogheda will be happy to escape Leckview Park with a scare.
Rovers will hope to try and regroup for a difficult tie at Sligo next week while Drogheda host Derry City at United Park.
Letterkenny Rovers: Shane Graham, Trisin Ferris, Conor Blaney, David Tyrell, Glenn McNulty, Oran Hilley, Oisin Roper (Marty Vance 73), Dylan Sweeney (Oliver Quinn 80), Noaise ÓBaoill, Conor Matthewson (Kennedy Boache-Ansah 68), Kevin O’Donnell.
Drogheda United: Dylan Sweeney, Craig D’Arcy (Emmett Carolan 82), Dale Harding (Nathan Noone Garland 82), Mark O’Brien, Eoghan Dempsey, Dominic Mahon (Adam Clarke 82), Lee Partridge, Conor Byrne, Matthew Keogh (Ross Nally 59), Nathan Seery (Liam Hudson 76), Mark Doyle.
Referee: John Coll.Tags: