Fermanagh Juniors got their first points of Super Cup NI 2016, with a hard-earned 3-1 victory over Dundalk Schoolboys League at Roe Mill, Limavady. Fermanagh got on top in the early stages and opened the scoring through Conor Love. Dundalk did show plenty of attacking intent, but Darragh McBrien doubled the advantage in the second half, before Landers sealed the win with a delightful finish. Dundalk pulled a goal back late in the match, but Fermanagh managed to hold on for the three points.
The match got underway with both teams going at it with maximum effort and intensity, but once it settled down it was Fermanagh who grabbed hold of the tie and in the 9th minute, they took the lead. A high ball was played into Eimhin Curran, who held the ball up well before playing it to Love, who hit a low drive beyond O’Grady and into the bottom-right corner, on the 9th minute.
Dundalk’s first effort on goal came from a set-piece. Browne and Tom Jackson worked well to play the ball into Kian McEvoy, but his effort from distance was easily gathered by Fermanagh goalkeeper Luke Johnston. Dundalk then had a great chance to equalise, again from a set play. Terence Kelly crossed the ball into forward Conor McGowan, who was free in the box, but saw his header drop just beyond Johnston’s far post.
The side from the south had another chance to get on the scoresheet, Jonathan Commins ghosted in at the far post but put his effort wide. Dundalk were then appealing for a handball in the box by Fermanagh captain Dean Corrigan, from a Commins cross. However, the referee was not interested.
Fermanagh regained control of the tie in the second half and early on had a great chance to double their lead. Mark Landers played a lofted ball into striker Curran, who managed to beat goalkeeper O’Grady before seeing his lobbed effort cleared off the goal line by defender Mark Traynor.
McBrien couldn’t quite pull the trigger, under pressure from the Dundalk defence, but he soon made up for it with an excellent individual goal. The attacking midfielder latched onto a Josh Largo-Ellis ball, got the better of defender Conor Soraghan, and curled a lovely right-foot effort into the top corner.
Dundalk sprung back into life after the second goal with an extended period of pressure. Kelly headed just wide, before Taynor saw his header go out for a corner. Jackson also threatened with a dangerous run; snuffed out by Largo-Ellis.
Substitute Ethan McCormack was holding the ball up well in the attacking third, but it was defensive midfielder Landers who put the game beyond any doubt. Love played through the onrushing Landers, whose side-foot effort curled beyond the keeper and into the net.
Mark was then very unfortunate to get the last touch on a Dundalk attack and put the ball beyond his own goalkeeper, to reduce the deficit for Dundalk. However it was just to be a consolation, after good work from McEvoy, saw Aidan Gardener clear an effort off the line, before Johnston saved the follow-up. Love had a late chance to restore the 3-goal advantage, but seen his effort sail over the bar, as Fermanagh finished on top.