League Report: Cobh Ramblers 1-1 Galway Utd
- Philip Morrissey
- Sat, Sep 10 2022
A last gasp equaliser from substitute Mikie Rowe saved Galway Utd a point to keep up their faint hopes of the title. Despite having the majority of possession, they were desperately under-par for much of the game. It is now four games without a win at the worse possible time.
Cobh were despondent at the final whistle. Having ridden an early storm, they received the boost of a first-half goal to grow into the game. They had chances on the break as the game went on but were caught by a sucker punch.
The home side elected to make five changes from the loss to Treaty. Justin Eguaibor replaced the suspended Harlain Mbayo. He was joined by Michael and James McCarthy, Luke Desmond and Beineon O’ Brien-Withmarsh. Jason Abbott, Sean McGrath, Conor Drinan and James O’ Leary dropped out. Galway elected to make four of their own from the cup loss to UCD. Conor Kearns, Ronan Manning, Charlie Lyons and Rob Manley came in place of Matt Connor, Diego Portilla, Mikie Rowe and Stephen Walsh.
Galway came out of the blocks straight away as they immediately put the home side under pressure- Ed McCarthy trying his luck from distance in the opening minute. It went high and wide though. Justin Eguaibor then got away with a poor touch that let in Wilson Waweru. The attacker hit the base of the post and saw it cleared. Rob Manley and David Hurley also had opportunities off target.
It seemed a matter of time before Galway struck for the lead. Their greater pace and physical authority in midfield were causing major concern. Max Hemmings strode through the middle of the park to set up a chance for Manley. He eventually shot wide. Manley also forced Breandán Frahill into a last-ditch challenge to deny him.
It was therefore a surprise when Cobh went in front. They won a free kick just inside the Galway half and Darragh O’Sullivan-Connell stepped up to take. His long, deep effort caught Conor Kearns by surprise and went in off the crossbar. It was due reward for standing firm and getting in Galway’s faces.
Galway did try and get back into it but now found the going tough. Both Charlie Lyons and Ed McCarthy had opportunities with headers but were unable to really trouble Hunt. David Hurley and Conor McCormack attempted a free kick routine to set up Manley right on half-time. He blasted well over though.
Galway did not come out with the expected barrage at the beginning of the second half. Rob Manning had two chances in succession. His free went straight into the wall and the follow-up was skewed wide.
The best chance came when a flicked header from Waweru headed straight into the corner. Hunt was just about able to palm it away with a reaction save. Galway staff screamed for a penalty after Manning went down under a challenge from Fleming. Instead, it was given as a dive and a yellow card for the attacker.
For as much as the away side had much of the possession the were unable to really make much of it. All the play was centred in the Cobh half as the retreated further and further back. The likes of Frahill and Eguaibor were standing firm and ably assisted by a hard-working midfield. Given the differences in experiences for both, Cobh stood their ground admirably.
Caulfield emptied his bench in a desperate search for a response. Every long ball seemed to result in a block or tackle as the Cobh players put their bodies on the line. Sean McGrath almost led a breakaway for a second, but he lacked support.
Just when it looked like Cobh were going to secure a rare and notable victory, Galway equalised. Waweru saw his attempt blocked but was able to recycle possession and lay it off to Mikie Rowe. He found space to place his shot beautifully into the top right corner giving Hunt no chance. A slight fracas ensued in the aftermath that saw a couple of bookings.
Cobh slumped to the ground at the end. They next face an important game at home to Athlone Town next Friday. Galway have a must win home game against rivals Cork City on the same night. One they cannot afford to drop points in.
Cobh Ramblers: Paul Hunt; Justin Eguaibor, Charlie Fleming, Brendan Frahill, James O'Leary; Luke Desmond (Dale Holland 68), Michael McCarthy, James McCarthy (James O'Leary 86), Pierce Phillips (c) (Jason Abbott 75); Jake Hegarty, Beineon O'Brien Whitmarsh (Sean McGrath 86).
Subs not used: Darragh Burke, Issa Kargbo, Danny O'Connell, Liam Kervick.
Booked: Luke Desmond (48), James McCarthy (84), Paul Hunt (90).
Sent off: None.
Galway United: Conor Kearns; James Finnerty, Charlie Lyons, Conor O'Keeffe; Max Hemmings (Oisin O'Reilly 78), Ronan Manning, Edward McCarthy (Mikie Rowe 78), Conor McCormack (c) (David Tarmey 78); David Hurley (Francely Lomboto 59), Rob Manley (Bastien Hery 59), Wilson Waweru.
Subs not used: Matthew Connor, Adam Thomas, Diego Portilla, Manu Dimas.
Booked: Ronan Manning (63) Wilson Waweru (90).
Sent off: None.
Referee: Mark Patchell
extratime.com Player of the Match: Breandán Frahill
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