Cork City stay on top after derby thriller against Cobh Ramblers

Cian Coleman headed home the winner after hosts battled back from two down
Cork City stay on top after derby thriller against Cobh Ramblers

Cork City striker Ruairi Keating strikes for the first goal against Cobh Ramblers at St Colman's Park. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

Cobh Ramblers 2 Cork City 3

THE bragging rights and a vital three points went to Cork City following this captivating League Of Ireland First Division clash at St Colman's Park thanks to Cian Coleman's second-half winner.

A bumper crowd of 3,942 was present, the biggest attendance at a Cork derby clash in St Colman's Park since 2008 and City's first league win on enemy turf in 33 years. They were treated to a compelling contest, with Ruairi Keating, Matthew Healy, Beineón O'Brien-Whitmarsh and Conor Drinan also scoring.

Colin Healy’s City side built on their victory earlier in the week away to Waterford to keep their promotion push on track. Darren Murphy's Ramblers defeated Athlone Town on Easter Monday, and competed well here, coming back from two down to level early in the second half, but remain off the pace for the play-offs.

 Darragh O'Sullivan Connell, Cobh Ramblers, turns Cian Murphy, Cork City. Picture: Jim Coughlan.
Darragh O'Sullivan Connell, Cobh Ramblers, turns Cian Murphy, Cork City. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

The atmosphere was electric and City had the first opportunity of note after five minutes when Cian Coleman headed over from a dangerous ball into the box.

City commenced brightly and were moving the ball about with intent. They went into the lead just shy of the quarter of an hour mark as Keating was on hand to finish with a close-range at the near post, after a ball in from Matthew Healy.

The visitors continued to impose their authority and control possession. 

Things got even better for City on 32 minutes when they doubled their advantage.

After the ball broke to him following a promising Cian Bargary run, Matt Healy found the back of the net with a beauty of a finish from outside the box to the corner, which was of a similar quality to his finish away to Waterford.

Ramblers responded right away and reduced the deficit from a corner kick. After the ball was floated in, Beineón O'Brien-Whitmarsh was on hand to head the ball home from a few yards out.

It sparked the game back to life and gave Cobh renewed confidence, with O'Brien-Whitmarsh threatening to equalise on 40 minutes for the home side, while Jake Hegarty also went close.

Ramblers came out fired up for the second half and got back on level terms with 50 minutes gone. After closing down a clearance by City goalkeeper David Harrington, Conor Drinan slotted home from close range.

Cobh were full of confidence at this point, with Drinan shooting wide from long range on the hour mark.

However, City went close to getting back in front as Cian Murphy raced through on the break, only for Cobh keeper Andy O’Donoghue to make a great save.

Moments later City went back into the lead when Coleman headed in from a corner kick on 68 minutes.

Ramblers somehow failed to level again when an attack involving O'Brien-Whitmarsh and Drinan was cleared off the line by the City defence.

Matt Srbely hit the post for the away side late on, while Drinan had another effort cleared off the line for Ramblers.

COBH RAMBLERS: Andy O’Donoghue; James McCarthy, Ben O’Riordan, Breandan Frahill, Daragh O’Sullivan Connell; Conor Drinan, Pierce Phillips, Jason Abbott, Jack Larkin; Beineón O'Brien-Whitmarsh, Jake Hegarty. 

Subs: Darryl Walsh for O’Sullivan Connell (65), Luke Desmond for Abbott, James O’Leary for Hegarty (both 75), Sean McGrath for McCarthy (87).

CORK CITY: David Harrington; Darragh Crowley, Cian Coleman, Ally Gilchrist, Kevin O’Connor; Aaron Bolger, Barry Coffey, Matthew Healy, Cian Bargary, Cian Murphy, Ruairi Keating.

Subs: Matt Srbely for Keating, Mark O’Mahony for Coffey (both 82).

Referee: Kevin O’Sullivan (Cork).

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