Cobh need points not plaudits from trip to Wexford

Cobh need points not plaudits from trip to Wexford

Longford Town v Cobh Ramblers Ramblers Conor Drinan tussles wuth Longford's Shane Elsworthy; Photo: Bob Morrison

COBH RAMBLERS will hope a disappointing 2022 League Of Ireland First Division season to date can start to be turned around when they travel to face Wexford FC in Ferrycarrig Park on Friday night.

Ramblers did produce an improved performance overall in the Longford Town game and had some great goal scoring opportunities. But Cobh would much rather secure results than gain plaudits one may argue.

The defeat to Longford arguably summed up Cobh’s season so far in a nutshell. Chances not being taken and also defensive errors proving costly. The positive is that these are things that can be worked on.

Ramblers will be dearly hoping the second quarter of the season will see improved fortunes and some much needed points on the board.

Darren Murphy’s side will need to find something and get points on the board sooner rather than later, otherwise the St Colman’s Park side could be in for a long season in the doldrums of the First Division.

Already at this stage of the season, Cobh are 7pts off 5th place and the final playoff spot. If that gap isn’t closed between now and the mid-season break, Ramblers face serious risk of being cut adrift at the bottom of the First Division.

Longford Town v Cobh Ramblers -Darryl Walsh in action for Ramblers. Photo: Bob Morrison
Longford Town v Cobh Ramblers -Darryl Walsh in action for Ramblers. Photo: Bob Morrison

Another positive, Harlain Mbayo has produced generally solid individual performances so far and Cobh look to have done well to have secured his footballing services.

A key feature of the 2022 League Of Ireland First Division is the growing number of full time sides in the second tier of Irish football. 

In particular Cork City, Galway United (managed by John Caulfield) and Waterford all are training on a full time basis.

Darren Murphy’s Cobh side on the other hand are training a few nights a week, holding down jobs and other commitments during the day.

“We are fit I think,” Murphy said on the differences experienced between his side and the full time teams such as Cork City.

“The difference in the gap probably comes over time consistency, that is because you have recovery. Lads are working and coming into part time, you don’t know what that work day is going to be like for them at times.

“Sometimes there might be a dip, whereas in a full time setting you have the guys in and they are at their peak every week. 

"So that gets more prevalent in consistency over a season.

“But then over the term of a season, teams will catch up fitness wise and that is when you get down to the playoffs and the last leg of games, everyone is kind of at the same level.

“There is a gap. Teams analysing teams, they(full time clubs) have a lot more time to analyse and they have a lot more time to work on individuals as well. That is over a season where the advantage is.

“But again, every team has something to offer here from what I have seen in the first few games of the First Division.

“Any team can get a result against any team. We have just got to tell our lads that. Going into games sometimes there is a mental battle as well against teams.” 

Wexford have in recent seasons been towards the bottom end of the First Division table. 

Longford Town v Cobh Ramblers Issa Karagbo in action for Ramblers. Photo: Bob Morrison
Longford Town v Cobh Ramblers Issa Karagbo in action for Ramblers. Photo: Bob Morrison

But with an astute young manager in Ian Ryan and the signings they have made for 2022, it suggests a potential start of a new era at the Ferrycarrig Park side.

The former UCD assistant boss Ryan has had a huge impact down in Wexford already and there are positive vibes about the direction this team could potentially be heading in.

Players such as Dinny Corcoran and Aaron Dobbs were astute additions for this Wexford team.

Last time out Wexford secured a creditable draw on the road against Galway United, with John Caulfield’s side requiring an 88th minute equaliser. The side from the South East also put it up to Colin Healy’s Cork City side and on another night could have secured at least a draw.

At this juncture of the campaign, Wexford look very much equipped to contest for one of the promotion playoff places.

Wexford head into the game with Cobh three points off the promotion play-off spots, so a win for Ryan’s Wexford side will be much welcomed and they will be targeting the victory in Friday’s affair.

Cobh you feel need something, anything at all, to bring some confidence into the side results wise.

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