HARPS CLAIM TITLE WITH POWERFUL PERFORMANCE!
U16 FC FINAL 2014.
Congratulations to our Under 16s who emerged comfortable enough winners in the opening match of County Final Day with a performance which paired a better cutting edge with excellent workrate and defensive organisation.
It is not always easy to carry the favourites tag into a final but the team got the benefit of a two goal burst in the first five minutes as first Jack Love in the third minute got on the end of a rebound off the post to palm home, followed minutes later by Gavin McGovern, who stabbed home a rebound after good play by Conor Cassidy. Nathan Jones had a really significant number of key contributions, and controlled our play very effectively in the first period, he nailed a good point from play in the seventh minute, before the Gaels had their one spell when they got at the Harps a bit. They goaled through the elusive John Rehill in the tenth minute with an excellent low finish, and Ronan Beattie converted a 45’ to bring them right back into it. Colm Jones and Odhran McBrien pointed for us, before Ronan Quinn got on the end of a Gaels’ move from the left wing to goal from close range. But that was as close as they would get. Our key forward Colm Jones delivered the goods in the next passage of play. He simply took over in the final ten minutes, bagging two goals, (one an absolute cracker off the inside of the post from maybe twenty yards), and two points, (one a monster from nearly forty yards). John Rehill nicked another point for the Gaels, but the half time margin of nine points was about right. Derrygonnelly were clearly on top in all of the key areas through full back Conor Cameron, midfielders Shane McGullion (a number of very good takes from kickouts) and Odhran McBrien, plus Aidy McKenna linking the play and using possession all the time.
Colm Jones got his third goal in the third minute of the second half, and it was hard to see the Gaels making a serious dent on the Harps’ ambitions after that. In truth, the Harps will be wondering why they didn’t pick off more scores, but they managed to extend through Aidy McKenna and Colm Jones points, before a long period of aimless enough play was ended by scores from Nathan Jones and Jason McGlone in the final spell of play. Oisin Smyth had an excellent low save in the twentieth minute to ensure that a pointed free from Conall Quinn and a Matthew Dixon point would be all the Gaels would score in the half. It wasn’t that we didn’t have the ball, because we had plenty of possession, but we didn’t maybe move it as quickly as we had in the first period. We probably were happy enough to keep the thing contained and controlled as well, with James McGrail and Conor Maguire particularly vigilant and strong in that regard. The game was won between the 20th and 40th minutes when excellent working of the ball out of defence, followed by good kickpassing into space for runners and support players to use first time saw us grab 3-4 and only concede 0-2.
Either side of that, when players had to be diligent and hardworking, they were. The likes of Gavin McGovern and Aaron McGlone, Aidy Maguire and Stephen Leonard were alert to the need to track back, and intercept attacks. But definitely a richly deserved victory for the whole panel and their managers Peter Jones and Anthony Greene.
Captain Conor Cameron lifted the cup and gave a very well delivered speech emphasising that the victory is to be shared by the whole squad and all of the people who work hard coaching young players for the Harps. Very important points to make.
Oisin Smyth, Adrian Maguire, Conor Cameron, Stephen Leonard, Conor Maguire, James McGrail, Aaron McGlone, Odhran McBrien, Shane McGullion, Aidan McKenna, Nathan Jones, Gavin McGovern, Jack Love, Colm Jones, Conor Cassidy, Rian McGovern (DG), Rian McGovern (Monea), Jason McGlone, Debhan McGovern, Shane McGrail, Gareth McGovern, Darragh Burke, Ciaran McGovern, Ronan McHugh, Jonathan Cameron, Leigh Greene, Caolin Love.
Managers: Peter Jones, Anthony Greene.