First
Date: 7:30 p.m. March 7, 2009
Venue:
Att: 353

David O'Riordan 48' -
Scored: 48'


Scored: 84'
- David McDaid 84'


Kildare County 1 - 1 Finn Harps

Sat, Mar 07 2009

A late strike from David McDaid rescued a point for Finn Harps as they opened up their First Division campaign with a hard-fought draw with Kildare County at a windswept Station Road on Saturday night. David O'Riordan had given the home side the lead just after the break, but McDaid's deflected shot on 84 minutes gave the Donegal-men a share of the spoils.

 

Although both sides had chances to win it late on, manager's Thomas Donnelly and Paul Hegarty are both likely to be content with a point in what were attrocious conditions in Newbridge. With a strong wind at their back it was Kildare who made the more impressive start, with David O'Riordan forcing a fine save out of Gavin Cullen in the Harps goal after just three minutes. Cathal Brady tricked his way down the left before playing in O'Riordan whose rasping shot from 20 yards was tipped over by Cullen.

 

Harps struggled to get out their own half in the opening 20 minutes, due to the combination of the poor conditions and some sloppy passing. For the home side, O'Riordan continued to look lively in attack. However, despite their dominance Kildare were unable to create anything of note.

 

As the half wore on Harps began to find their way, with Sean McGowan dragging a shot wide from the edge of the area after 25 minutes. Gethins then went even closer for Harps, with an angled shot which Kildare 'keeper Colin Cassidy turned over the bar. McDaid looked to have given the lead on 39 minutes when he was played in behind the Kildare defence. But, with just the 'keeper to beat, his instinctive shot from eight-yards came back off the post.

 

The blustery conditions continued to play havoc after the break, but although Harps now had the wind at their backs it was Kildare who opened the scoring on 48 minutes when O'Riordan's shot from the edge of the area took a wicked deflection and looped over Cullen and into the net.

 

That goal seemed to bring Harps back to life. On 54 minutes a powerful McGowan shot forced Cassidy into a flying save. Cassidy again came to his side's rescue a minute later when he tipped a thunderous Ruari Harkin shot from 25-yards on to the bar.

 

Kildare then almost doubled their advantage following a piece of sloppy defending from Paddy Mahon whose pass back to his 'keeper got caught in the wind. Kildare's Brady nipped in and rounded the out-rushing Cullen, but he dragged his angled shot across the goalface and wide. Michael Funstone then almost grabbed a fortunate equaliser for Harps on 79 minutes when his shot from all of 30-yards caught the wind and bounced narrowly over the bar with Cassidy well-beaten.

 

Harps manager Paul Hegarty rung the changes in a bid to get his side back in the match, with Mark Brolly and Mark Forker entering the fray. They eventually got their equaliser with just six minutes remaining when McDaid tucked away Christie Connaghan's cross. Connaghan's ball in from the right fell to the striker 12-yards out and his deflected shot gave Cassidy no chance in the Kildare goal.

 

The away side pressed for a winner with McDaid and Gethins both spurning good chances in the box, but Kildare almost caught them on the break on 86 minutes, with midfielder Colin Osborne, who enjoyed a fine game in the centre of the park, drawing a fine save out of Cullen from 19-yards.

 

The home side almost suffered a cruel blow in the dying seconds of injury time when Brady almost headed a Gethins cross into his own net. However, the Thoroughbreads were able to hold on for a precious point.

 

 

Kildare County: Colin Cassidy; Matt Byrne (Colin Murray 69), Baba Issaka, Ken Mahoney, Stephen Burke, Rory Browne (Stephen Dunne 65), Cathal Brady, Colin Osbourne, Patrick Mahon, David O'Riordan (Pat Dobbs 83), Paul Rigney.
Subs not used: Leslie Kelly, Kevin McDonnell.

 

Finn Harps: Gavin Cullen; Ian Rossiter, Ciaran Coll, Johnny Havlin (Mark Brolly 69), Marc Mukendi, Sean McGowan, Christie Connaghan, Ruari Harkin, David McDaid, Conor Gethins, Michael Funstone (Mark Forker 79).
Subs not used: Paddy Bonner, Sean Houston, Ciaran Gallagher.

 

Referee: Rob Rogers (Dublin)

Attendance:

Extratime.ie man of the match: Colin Osbourne (Kildare County).

 


Kildare County
Colin Cassidy
Goalkeeper
Ken Mahony
Defender
Baba Issaka
Defender
Matt Byrne
Defender
Stephen Burke
Defender
Colin Osbourne
Midfielder
Paddy Mahon
Midfielder
Rory Brown
Midfielder
Cathal Brady
Midfielder
Paul Rigney
Forward
David O'Riordan
48Scored: 48'
Forward

Substitutes
Colin Murray
Midfield
Kevin McDonnell
Goalkeeper
Leslie Kelly
Midfield
Stephen Dunne
Unknown
Patrick Dobbs
Forward
Finn Harps
Gavin Cullen
Goalkeeper
Ian Rossiter
Defender
Marc Mukendi
Defender
Johnny Havlin
Defender
3 Ciaran Coll
Defender
Shaun McGowan
Midfielder
Ruairi Harkin
Midfielder
Michael Funston
Midfielder
Christy Conaghan
Midfielder
David McDaid
Forward
84Scored: 84'
Conor Gethins
Forward

Substitutes
Sean Houston
Midfield
Corny Gallagher
Defender
Mark Forker
Midfield
Marc Brolly
Midfield
Patrick Bonner
Forward