Leeds Survive Casement Celtic Scare in Dramatic Saxone Cup Clash (Oct 2003). Blast from the Past

 Blast from the Past (Oct 2003)

Leeds Survive Casement Celtic Scare

 in Dramatic Saxone Cup Clash 
Casement's John Heffernan tackled by Sean Burke (left)

Leeds 4 Casement Celtic 2

(after extra time)

Dust off your jerseys and lace up your boots – we're taking a trip down memory lane to a nail-biting Saxone Cup clash between local rivals Leeds and Casement Celtic, a game decided not just by goals, but by penalty heroics and last-gasp drama!

In a thrilling encounter that needed extra time to settle, Leeds edged out local rivals Casement Celtic 4-2 to progress to the second round of the Murphy's Stout Saxone Cup back in October 2003. 

Penalty Drama

Hosts Leeds came from behind and might well have won the game in normal time but for a great penalty save by Casement stopper Dave Newman. It was the second penalty of the game. The first came in the 3rd minute. Tony Lee inexplicably handled in the box and Ray Kelly scored well for Leeds.



Midway through, Sean Burke broke into the Casement box as a free dropped in front of him and looked good for a goal until Tony Ryan made a superb tackle. The equaliser came three minutes later, O’Regan on target with a far post header after a well-driven Terence Hourigan free from the right touchline.

Casement's Hourigan boots clear

Casement Takes the Lead, Leeds Fights Back

The drama continued. Just before halftime, Anthony Ruby's penalty box run was blocked by Colin Chandley, but the rebound fell kindly to Hourigan whose power-packed volley was parried by Fitzgerald. Incredibly, Ruby, off balance, scuffed the follow-up straight at the keeper.

The Southsiders did make it 2-1 eight minutes into the second half. Ruby, a few yards outside the Leeds box, was running across the pitch and pushed the ball too far ahead of himself. But it wasn't a defender that robbed him. Instead, colleague Paul O'Callaghan raced on to the ball and drove a beauty past Fitzgerald.

Diarmuid Long (Leeds) goes highest

Leeds Levels the Playing Field (Again!)

Leeds refused to give up and the busy Newman denied Dave Power and Chris Wall with impressive saves. The equaliser eventually arrived midway through the second half. Substitute Dean Buckley's diagonal pass found Rob Kreigal and he slotted the ball home with a low drive.

The drama wasn't over yet. Just two minutes later, Leeds were awarded another penalty after Chris Wall was brought down by Danny Stanton. However, Buckley's spot-kick was expertly saved by the diving Newman.

The closing stages of normal time saw both sides searching for a winner. Buckley's header from a Kreigal free kick sailed just wide, while a dangerous Kreigal corner was cleared off the line by Casement captain John Paul Heffernan.

Casement's golden opportunity arrived with 12 minutes remaining. O'Regan broke the offside trap but was ultimately dispossessed by a combined challenge from Chandley and Long.

Leeds defender Colin Chandley goes past the grounded Ken O'Riordan and Paul O'Callaghan. 

Extra Time Heroics Secure Victory for Leeds

Both sides pushed for a winner in the closing stages, but it was Leeds who dominated in extra time. A Buckley free-kick found Kevin O'Mahony unmarked at the far post and he headed home with ease to give Leeds a 3-2 lead.

Casement pressed for an equaliser but were caught on the break. Ray Kelly held off a challenge before sending Kreigal through on goal. The striker kept his cool and slotted the ball past Newman to seal the victory for Leeds.

Casement's Terence Hourigan on the ball.

Leeds: Mark Fitzgerald, Dave Power, Chris Radley, Colin Chandley, Kevin O'Mahony, Ray Kelly, Denis Falvey, Diarmuid Long, Rob Kreigal, Sean Burke (captain) and Chris Wall. Subs: Dean Buckley (Falvey, 53rd minute).

Casement Celtic: Dave Newman,  Danny Stanton, Tony Ryan, Tony Lee, Cormac O'Mahony, Anthony Ruby, John Paul Heffernan (captain), Paul O'Callaghan, Terence Hourigan, Ken O'Regan, Anthony O'Brien. Subs: John Paul Morrissey (for O’Brien at half-time), Ger Hennessy (for Ruby 63rd minute) and Dave O'Brien (for Lee, 8th minute of extra time).

Referee: Andrew Mylod.