Philip Morrissey reports from Turner’s Cross
Cork City won for the first time in six games to convincingly sweep aside their visitors from Wexford. It keeps up their hopes of finishing in the top half now that the play-offs are out of reach.
It was another damaging loss for Wexford though. A win could have put them ahead of Cobh after good recent form. Instead the gap has widened again.
Cork City lost Josh Honohan who was called up to the Republic of Ireland under-21 squad who won against Luxemburg earlier in the day. Jonas Hakkinen returned in his place. Alec Byrne and Sean Kennedy also started instead of Darragh Crowley and Beineón O’Brien-Withmarsh. Wexford welcomed back Lorcan Fitzgerald who missed the win against UCD through suspension.
The home side were on top in the early stages of the game. Cian Bargary provided an early threat as a shot was blocked and then Jimmy Corcoran was able to claim a curling effort after a chance for Barry Coffey rebounded into his path. David Harrington took a bang for his troubles as he came out to claim a through ball. The net-minder was okay to continue though.
Wexford began to come back into the game. Decent play from the likes of Jack Doherty and Moylan needed a last-ditch tackle from Cian Coleman to deny the latter. The ball was retained, and Kyle Robinson was presented with a chance in front of goal. His chip lacked any power though.
The Leesiders then struck for the lead. The ball was won back in midfield and came to the feet of Sean Kennedy. He was able to slip a ball into the path of Cian Murphy who finished well into the bottom corner.
City started to exert their dominance on the game as the half wore on. Fitzgerald made a desperate block to stop a curling effort from Bargary. Kevin McEvoy did better moments later. The ball came into Cian Murphy who was challenged by the keeper. It bounced up and the forward looked certain to score. The defender was just able to hack it off the line. Kennedy was then denied by Corcoran as City broke from a corner.
The pressure told eventually. Hakkinen flicked on a header from a corner which was missed by the defender. Barry Coffey was there to bundle home.
It got worse moments later as Wexford went down to ten men with Fitzgerald seeing red after a coming together with Coffey.
Wexford started the second half on the front foot as they strove to get something out of the game. They looked to get it forward quicker but lacked the cutting edge to make a difference.
Any hopes were extinguished by Bargary. He ran onto a ball down the centre to emerge one-on-one with the ‘keeper, skipped past him and slotted into an empty net.
A flurry of substitutions came on as both managers gave players a rest. One of these completed the scoring. Dylan McGlade was found out on the right to be faced by a Wexford defender. He bustled past him before shooting goalward. It was just powerful enough to squirm under the gloves of Corcoran.
Joy then for the Leesiders in front of a decent crowd. It is another tough job for Wexford as they travel to play-off chasing Galway United. Cork City meanwhile make the journey to play UCD.
Cork City: David Harrington; Gordon Walker (Dale Holland 81), Ronan Hurley, Jonas Hakkinen, Cian Coleman (c); Barry Coffey, Alec Byrne (Darragh Crowley 77), Aaron Bolger; Cian Murphy (Beineon O'Brien Whitmarsh 81), Sean Kennedy (Dylan McGlade 65), Cian Bargary (Luke Desmond 81).
Subs not used: Mark McNulty, Paul Hunt, Steven Beattie, Gearóid Morrissey.
Wexford: Jimmy Corcoran; Paul Cleary, Lorcan Fitzgerald, Kevin McEvoy; Conor Crowley (Luke Scanlon 72), Karl Fitzsimons (Andrew Farrell 82), Harry Groome (Daniel Dobbin 46), Jack Moylan; Jack Doherty, Karl Manahan (c), Kyle Robinson (Cian Kelly 46).
Subs not used: Sean Martin, Donal Porter, Ayman Yousif, Evan Farrell.
Booked: Paul Cleary (15) .
Sent off: Lorcan Fitzgerald (40).
Referee: Mark Houlihan
extratime.com Player of the Match: Cian Bargary (Cork City)