Andrew Dempsey reports from Stradbrook Road
Shelbourne continued their unbeaten start to their 2021 First Division campaign with a 3-1 victory over Cabinteely at Stradbrook.
The Reds victory at Stradbrook was their first against Cabinteely since October 2017, and manager Ian Morris’ first win over Cabo.
Goals from Michael O’Connor and Shane Farrell gave them a two-nil lead heading into the break, while Kevin O’Connor made it three from a free-kick in the second-half.
Jem Campion would then score a consolation on his home league debut for Cabo, but it was not enough as Cabinteely fell to another defeat.
Pat Devlin’s Cabinteely came into the game having not lost to Shelbourne in any of their last previous six league games against the Reds.
Shelbourne’s last win over Cabo in fact came in October 2017. From that Shels side who won over Devlin’s then young side, only Dayle Rooney is still at the club.
The Reds flexed their considerable muscle last weekend when they earned a comprehensive 3-1 away to Cork City at Turner’s Cross.
Following his side’s convincing win on their travels – manager Ian Morris made one change from their win in the second city, with Glen McAuley retuning from suspension.
Cabo on the other hand made two alterations from their last outing away to UCD – as a host of their players returned to the squad after missing out on last week’s derby defeat at Belfield.
But it was the Reds who started the game the better of the two – with Michael O’Connor seeing his shot blocked by Kevin Knight following a Dayle Rooney corner.
Rooney’s set-pieces proved troublesome yet again moments later as his free-kick found Ally Gilchrist at the back post, but the ex-Derry defender could only head wide.
Cabinteely would then fashion an opening of their own minutes later – but Ben Hanrahan could only shoot wide after some good link up play with Kieran Marty Waters.
And despite growing into the game – Cabo fell behind in the 26th minute thanks to a Michael O’Connor penalty.
Shane Farrell was taken down just inside the penalty area by Dean Casey – and following complaints, the ex-Waterford striker found the back of the net with relative ease.
Pat Devlin’s side were well in the game at that point – and they went close to equalising through Casey, but Brendan Clarke got down well to save.
And Cabinteely’s task got even tougher with six minutes to go before the break – as Farrell’s shot turn cross creeped into the top corner of Hayden’s net.
Shelbourne continued to press as the second-half began – with forward O’Connor going close after peeling off the shoulder of a Cabinteely defender with ease.
But Shels would not be denied a third as Kevin O’Connor’s heavily deflected free-kick spun into the back of the net, leaving Hayden with no chance.
The Reds’ third came shortly after Cabo nearly halved their deficit, but nobody could get on the end pf Casey’s cross.
Substitute Eoin McPhillips then launched a shot from distance shortly afterwards, but it was easily blocked by a Shelbourne defender as it went out harmlessly for a corner-kick.
However, Cabinteely did grab a consolation through Jem Campion late on in the 83rd minute.
Campion pounced on a misplaced pass from a Shelbourne defender, before slotting the ball home past Brendan Clarke in the Shelbourne goal.
But that was as good as it got for Cabinteely as they fell to their second defeat on the spin, while Shelbourne continued with their promotion push.
And following the final whistle, Kevin Knight received his marching orders to end a bad night for Cabo.
Cabinteely: Adam Hayden; Luke McWilliams, Kevin Knight, Dean Casey (Niall Barnes 71), Daniel Blackbyrne (c); Jordan Payne (Luke Clucas 86), Zak O'Neill, Ben Hanrahan (Jem Campion 71), Alex Aspil (Deane Watters 46); Marty Waters, Sean McDonald (Eoin McPhillips 46).
Subs not used: Conor Knight, Joe Hyland, Ben Clarke, Mitchell Byrne.
Booked: Dean Casey (22), Dean Casey (35), Kevin Knight (44), Eoin McPhillips (59), Luke McWilliams (90).
Sent Off: Kevin Knight (90+6).
Shelbourne: Brendan Clarke; Michael Barker, Ally Gilchrist, Maxim Kouogun, Kevin O'Connor (c); Shane Farrell (John Ross Wilson 85), JJ Lunney, Brian McManus (Sean Quinn 75), Dayle Rooney (David Toure 85); Glen McAuley (Yoyo Mahdy 69), Michael O'Connor (Ryan Brennan 75).
Subs not used: Luke Byrne, Alex Cetiner, Kyle O'Connor.
Booked: Brian McManus (21) ,Kevin O'Connor (45) JJ Lunney (87).
Referee: Alan Patchell
ExtraTime.ie Player of the Match: Shane Farrell (Shelbourne).