Cobh Ramblers 0 Galway United 1
COBH Ramblers tasted defeat against the John Caulfield managed Galway United side at St Colman’s Park on Friday night.
On a night which saw Shelbourne crowned First Division champions, Darren Murphy’s wait for a league victory as Cobh boss goes on.
Ramblers made three changes from their clash last time out with Bray Wanderers, with Killian Cooper, Lee Devitt and John Kavanagh coming in for Luke Kennedy, Stephen O’Leary and Fionn Duggan.
With Galway already having secured their promotion playoff spot fresh off an emphatic victory over UCD last weekend, Caulfield in his United starting 11 included former long-serving Ramblers man David Hurley and former Cork City midfielder Conor McCormack.
In what was a bright start from both sides to the contest, Galway gradually imposed their authority and went on to largely dominate the first half the longer it progressed.
Ian Turner fired over for Cobh from a free kick in the opening minutes of the con
test. While Galway man Mikie Rowe saw his shot in a menacing position inside the box blocked down early on.
Ruairi Keating threatened from an early volley for the visitors, as the West Of Ireland side had a strong attacking spell around the quarter of an hour mark.
Shortly after this, Cobh went close with arguably the best chance of the game up to this point. From a corner-kick through Killian Cooper, who headed just wide of the mark from a Turner cross.
As the game approached the midway stage of the opening half things were generally even stevens in terms of the exchanges.
However, Galway went into the lead with 25 minutes played; from a Conor McCormack corner kick, the ball fell to the feet of Keating as he fired to the back of the net.
Ramblers responded right away from the restart with a flurry of dangerous crosses into the box, but the Galway backline was to hold firm. Despite the best Cobh efforts, by this stage, they were finding the United defence a tough nut to crack and not testing Conor Kearns in the Galway goal.
They remained professional and impose their authority and they were looking to turn the screw in search of a second goal. But Galway did see proceedings out to the half time break with the advantage.
In fact, Galway could have extended their lead on the stroke of half time, as Keating saw his volleyed strike saved well by Ramblers shot-stopper Chambers.
United shortly into the second half had another shot on goal, as Keating saw his driving effort go straight into the hands of Chambers, as the same man had a Galway penalty appeal turned down moments later.
Galway went close again on 54 minutes when Gary Boylan saw his shot go just inches wide of the mark, which Maurice Nugent also was close to finishing home with a neat backheel.
With an hour gone on the clock, Galway were awarded a penalty kick, when Wilson Waweru was taken down by Cobh’s John Kavanagh.
Keating assumed spot-taking duties, however, he smashed his penalty effort high and over the crossbar.
Galway, who were continuing to apply the pressure, certainly had the chances to put this game to bed, with Chambers forced into another stop to deny a Keating attempt on goal.
Heading into the final 15 minutes, Galway went close again from a Killian Brouder header, as Cobh defender Darryl Walsh cleared off the line.
With the game in the final 10 minutes, Ramblers, who were pushing forward for an equaliser, were reduced to ten men as Regix Madika was given his marching orders following a second yellow card.
Shane Doherty had a golden chance to double the Galway advantage but fited wide with only the keeper to beat, with Cunningham also going close for the visitors. It mattered little, as Galway secured a deserved victory.