Two unbeaten sides to date went head to head at home yesterday morning as our U12’s were expecting a tough test from Carraroe side MacDara. The tough test was added to by the absence of inspirational joint managers Lee Murphy & Gary Lally who were sunning themselves in lovely Portugal and were unable to come live to Colemanstown via Skype. However, the inside of David Gilligan’s head yesterday constituted the most interesting place in soccer given that his entire day was given over to Colemanstown soccer. Up good and early, he was in line to take over duties for the absent U12 management team, then travelled to Abbeyknockmoy to assume his U14 managerial role and then back to Colemanstown for reporting duty for the A team’s game against Corrib Rangers. This encapsulates David Gilligan and his commitment.
This U12 game was played with true grit and spirit from both teams. The tight nature of the game from the start ensured that the game was uncomfortably close to a ‘must win’ game. Colemanstown got off to a great start with two early chances from Harry Mitchell after good link up with Jason Rabbitte but the keeper saved well on both occasions. 17mins in and Tommy Mellodys free kick floated into the box, bobbled around a bit, while the simplest of touches would have poked it over the line. On 24mins Tommy Mellody’s cross found the feet of Ciaran Keating who wasn’t expecting the ball to find his feet and somehow deflected off his shin and out wide. Jason Rabbitte went close as his effort was saved at the post by the keeper while a subsequent shot at goal from the aforementioned Rabbitte whizzed right across the face of goal. With minutes to go to half time Cian Ruane drew a massive one handed save from a long range MacDara drive which was eventually cleared from danger by the combined efforts of Eanna Burke, Luke Williams and Conor Laffey. 0-0 at half time. Though, it has to be said, Colemanstown were the better side in the opening 30 minutes by high-pressing on defense, maintaining possession and spraying the ball throughout the pitch to get into advantageous positions but MacDara’s defence were like a stone wall.
4 mins after the restart and Harry Mitchell broke the deadlock as he squeezed the ball inside the post after a cross from Tommy Mellody. 6mins later MacDara levelled matters when a free kick beat the wall and somehow found the net, possibly deflecting off the post on its way. Straight from the kick off, Eanna Burke was unlucky as his attempted volley to Jason Rabbitte’s cross just failed to work out; it would have been a beauty had he connected. Straight up the other end, Cian Ruane got his fist to a MacDara corner to avert the ball from danger. Harry Mitchell then had a half chance as he ran onto a long kick out from Cian Ruane but the visitor’s keeper was quick off his line and although Harry slide in, in an attempt to toe poke the ball home, MacDara’s keeper stole half a yard on him to just about get there first. In the ensuing play Jason Rabbitte hit the post as there was a wall of red jerseys in defence making it difficult for our fast strikers to make the break through. Conor Laffey made a vital interception to keep the ball away from danger 22mns into the 2nd half and it looked like both teams had weathered the storm. With 3 mins left Colemanstown received a killer blow as MacDara finished a great move down the stand side of the field, crossed to an unmarked player who left Cian Ruane with no chance to put MacDara 2-1 up. Tommy Mellody and Conor Laffey had some late chances to steal an equaliser but their efforts were wide. So 2-1 it finished, but one thing for sure, these boys won’t let this dent dim their drive for the rest of the league campaign.
Panel: Cian Ruane, Conor Laffey, Eanna Burke, Luke Williams, Adam Cleary, Jason Rabbitte, Ciaran Keating, Tommy Mellody, Harry Mitchell, Eoin Keague, Larry Murrajovos