PREMIER A 18.02.06
Grattan United 2 Killumney Utd 0
Unbeaten Grattan United, the leaders in Murphy’s Stout Premier A, outfought visitors Killumney United on Saturday to earn their 8th league win in a row.
Youthful Grattan were sharper at O’Neill Park. They were up for it, and deserved their win. But things could well have turned out differently for the Ovens visitors had they taken either of two gilt edged chances midway through the first half.
The lead would have been against the run of play at the time but that wouldn’t have worried Danny Garrett, on the line, or his player-manager Bobby Bornemann who had seen their side take a pounding in the opening twenty minutes or so.
But Denis Cronin was reliable as ever in goal and his back four, well led by skipper Conor Pollock, played well enough even if at times they had to rely on lady luck. Grattan were missing reliable marksman Timmy Long and it showed in the scoreless first half.
Killumney had the slope to their backs in the second half and half-time hopes were high that the mid table team could turn a nil nil half-time score into a win. But the Grattan youngsters, John Paul O’Sullivan in particular, were just as lively, just as much of a handful, after the break, and went on to take all three points.
O’Sullivan and company endured a frustrating first half, particularly at the hands of Cronin. The veteran keeper did well to hold a Darren Galvin corner in the 5th minute.
Five minutes later, O’Sullivan headed a Pat O’Connor cross down in the box and Galvin's shot was intercepted by Pollock and Cronin tidied up. In the next minute, Alan O’Brien set the busy John Kelleher up for a cross towards O’Sullivan but the wily Cronin intercepted.
O’Sullivan's frustration peaked in the 14th minute when he lost his footing just as he was about to tap a low Kelleher cross home. In the next minute, he got a touch to another Kelleher cross. Keeper Cronin parried and the loose ball ran wide off the chest of the incoming O'Brien.
Killumney got their chances midway through but Martin O'Leary’s 19th minute corner was headed over from close range by the unmarked Dermot Kelly. Five minutes later, Kelly worked his way in on the left and crossed to the far post but the unmarked Dave O’Sullivan headed just over.
Soon the traffic was back towards the Killumney goal but poor finishing and some good Cronin saves prevented a goal. The home side did have the ball in the net but O’Connor’s angled blast, following a 32nd minute corner, was ruled out as one or two of his colleagues had been slow to get out.
It all came right for Grattan in the second half. They found acres of space up the left and eventually exploited it. For a short while, it looked as if Killumney would hold out. O’Sullivan drove over from a narrow angle, Galvin had a shot well saved and then Cronin did well to intercept a Kelleher cross.
The overdue opener came in the 59th minute when O’Sullivan arrived unmarked at the far post to head home a free from the right by O’Connor.
Killumney, to be fair, tried their best to get back into it and indeed had the Grattan defence unsettled at times over the next twenty minutes or so. But they failed to create any clear-cut chances and keeper Adam Lynch was rarely bothered.
O’Sullivan made it safe in the 77th minute. Then midfielder Harry Goulding headed a free into the box. It hopped loose to two Grattan players and O’Sullivan beat colleague Kelleher to touch the ball past Cronin and make the final score 2-0.
Grattan United: Adam Lynch, Damien Peelo, Darren Galvin, Brian O’Sullivan, Paul Lynch (captain), Pat O’Connor, Harry Goulding, Alan O'Brien, John Kelleher, John Paul O’Sullivan and Mark O’Sullivan. Subs used: Barry O’Rourke for O'Brien (73rd minute) and Alan O’Riordan for M. O’Sullivan (76th).
Killumney United: Denis Cronin, Terry Yelverton (captain)(13), Conor Pollock, Mark Corish, Michael Sugrue (12), Omar Desmond, Finbarr Curran, Dave O’Sullivan, Dermot Kelly, Martin O’Leary and Bobby Bornemann. Sub used: Vince Ahern for Bornemann (76th minute).
Referee: Damien O’Mahony.