MSL soccer: Cian Leonard scores twice as Rockmount advance in FAI Intermediate Cup

Holders produce five-star display against Carrigaline United
MSL soccer: Cian Leonard scores twice as Rockmount advance in FAI Intermediate Cup

Rockmount’s Nathan Broderick is tackled by Carrigaline’s Stephen D’Arcy. Picture: Howard Crowdy

Carrigaline United 1

Rockmount 5

FAI Intermediate Cup holders Rockmount cruised into the fourth round of the competition after a convincing 5-1 win over Carrigaline United in Ballea Park on Friday evening.

Four first-half goals ended this tie by the interval and even though Carrigaline struck early in the second to give themselves a slight hope, the comeback never happened and a fifth Rockmount goal — Cian Leonard’s second of the night — with less than 15 minutes remaining rounded off a fine performance by the visitors.

Following the wind and rain of previous weeks, conditions were perfect for football here, and Rockmount went about their business straight away.

They jumped in front after five minutes when Nathan Broderick raced on to a defence-splitting pass and, with time and space, drove the ball low past Ian Giltinan in the Carrigaline goal.

An early setback for the hosts only got worse seven minutes later as Rockmount scored a fantastic team goal. Luke Casey picked up possession on the left and, with the outside of his left foot, curled the ball in behind the Carrigaline defence to Nathan Broderick on the right side of the penalty area; he quickly turned the ball into Leonard who scored from close range. 

Carrigaline had an uphill struggle now and with Jason Sexton and Adam Crowley in top form at the back, it was difficult to see a way back for the home side.

Four minutes later Carrigaline had another attempt on goal; Dylan O’Flaherty rose high at the back post to get on the end of a cross from the right, but his downward header went wide.

A minute later, though, Rockmount stretched their lead when Eoin Murphy ran at his man and made space for a shot just outside the penalty area which nestled in the far corner of the net.

Rockmount were rampant now and four minutes later Casey produced the goal of the game. The Irish international intercepted a stray pass on halfway and, spotting Giltinan off his line, he drove his shot over the keeper’s head and under the crossbar for an exquisite finish.

Rockmount had one foot in the fourth round at the start of the second half, but Carrigaline upped their game in this period. They gave themselves a glimmer of hope when, two minutes in, Nathan Manson-Browne hit a low drive from outside the penalty area which shouldn’t have troubled Fitzgerald, but the ball went under his legs and into the net.

The goal gave Carrigaline some hope and Richard Duggan had a shot go wide five minutes later, but Rockmount remained in control and went about closing out the game.

Carrigaline had more possession in this period than in the first half, but they couldn’t make further inroads, and Fitzgerald’s goal was never in any further danger.

At the other end, Giltinan did very well to turn a Murphy free kick from 20 yards around for a corner, and from David Stack’s flag kick Cian Murphy’s header went narrowly wide.

Giltinan then pulled an attempted Leonard lob out of the air on 76 minutes, but a minute later the striker did get his second goal, heading home at the far post from a measured Cian Murphy delivery on the left to complete a good all-round and thoroughly efficient performance from the cup holders.

CARRIGALINE UNITED: Ian Giltinan, David Crotty, Richard Duggan, Stephen D’Arcy, David Moore, Dylan O’Flaherty, Killian Murphy, Nathan Manson-Browne, Cian O’Flaherty, Nathan Coleman, Kalen Spillane.

Subs: Darragh Buckley for D’Arcy (50), Andrew Cronin for Moore (55), Nathan Crowley for Duggan (64), James McSweeney for Crotty (71).

ROCKMOUNT: Sean Fitzgerald, Jack O’Sullivan, Cian Murphy, Adam Crowley, Jason Sexton, Hugh O’Donovan, Eoin Murphy, Danny Aherne, Cian Leonard, Nathan Broderick, Luke Casey.

Subs: David Stack for Casey (h/t), Niall Hanley for Aherne (62), Christopher Hull and James O’Connell for Eoin Murphy and Broderick (both 77), Colm Healy for Leonard (86).

Referee: E McNally, assistants, R O’Leary, J Mannix.

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