Cork City beaten on home turf by Shelbourne

5,078 were in Turner's Cross on St Patrick's Day but Colin Healy's side couldn't build on their impressive recent displays
Cork City beaten on home turf by Shelbourne

Shelbourne supporters celebrate a goal against Cork City at Turner's Cross. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

Cork City 0 Shelbourne 2 

CORK City fell to their second home defeat of the season in front of 5,078, against Shelbourne at Turner's Cross on Friday. 

There could be few complaints about the result as the Dubliners controlled proceedings throughout. Although City were a little off the pace, credit must go to Shels, who were excellent and deserved the three points.

There were two changes in the City starting 11 from the side that drew away to Sligo Rovers in their last outing. Barry Coffey returned to the side after a two-game absence. With Cian Bargary also recalled to the starting line-up. Daniel Krezic and Kevin Custovic were the two players to miss out, with the latter not in the matchday squad.

Shels manager Damien Duff would have been pleased with how his team began the game. Shels were calm in possession and their movement off the ball to give the man in possession options was excellent. Out of possession, the Dubliners weren’t giving the City players time on the ball and forced their opponents into making unnecessary errors.

Shels almost took the lead when Evan Caffrey’s cross-come-shot came back off the post. However, it wasn’t long before the Dubliners were in front when a well-worked set-piece by the visitors was inadvertently turned into his own net by Josh Honohan.

City’s response to going behind was swift. Colin Healy’s men upped the tempo of their play and Coffey forced Conor Kearns into action for the first time with his strike from just inside the area, which the Shels’ keeper comfortably dealt with.

 Cian Bargary, Cork City, and John Wilson, Shelbourne, battle in the air. Picture: Jim Coughlan.
Cian Bargary, Cork City, and John Wilson, Shelbourne, battle in the air. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

Shels nullified City’s threat and the game was flat midway through the first half. The home side’s best chance of scoring looked through a set piece but credit must go to Kearns for the way he was dealing with City’s corners, considering the number of players surrounding him. He was able to navigate his way through those trying to contain him to his line, to make sure he made some connection with the ball to clear the danger and relieve the pressure on his side.

Shels were winning the midfield battle with Kian Leavy, Brian McManus, and Caffery in particular, controlling the game. City captain Cian Coleman was working tirelessly for his team but lacked support in his press from others around him.

City should have been level going in at the break but Coffey was unable to direct his effort on target. The midfielder made an excellent run to get on the end of Ruairi Keating’s flick-on but surprisingly blazed over the crossbar on the half-volley.

Shels began the second half in a similar fashion to the first, with the visitors the better of the teams. Jack Moylan doubled his side’s advantage when found space in the penalty area and calmly finished low into the corner of Jimmy Corocan’s net.

City were failing to make any impact on the game, and lacked the creativity that was needed to unlock a well-organised Shels defence. City’s top scorer Keating was having a frustrating evening and rarely had opportunities to add to his goal tally this season. When the striker did manage to test Kearns, the former Galway United keeper was equal to Keating’s efforts.

Shels defensive organisation reduced the home side to relying on half-chances with Cian Baragary next to try his luck but to no avail.

There were claims for a penalty from the home supporters when Keating fell to the ground following a challenge from former City player Shane Griffin, but referee Ray Mattews rightly waved away the appeals as it was a superb bit of defending from Griffin.

CITY: Corcoran; Crowley, Gilchrist, Hakkinen, Honohan; Coleman, Healy (krezic 56), Coffey (O’Brien-Whitmarsh 81); Bargary (Walker 81), Keating, Varian (Owolabi 73).

SHELS: Kearns; J Wilson, Molly, Byrne, Griffin (Ledwidge 76), T. Wilson; Farrell (McManus 14), Leavy (Robinson 65), Caffery; Molloy, Smith.

Referee: R Matthews

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