Coachford work hard to reach AOH Cup final

Coachford work hard to reach AOH Cup final

Cialan O'Sullivan scored Coachford's winner when they defeated Cathedral Celtic 2-1 in the semi-final of the AOH Cup at the Farm.

Coachford 2

Cathedral Celtic 1

Coachford were made work hard and had to come from behind before booking their way through to the AOH Cup final after a hard-earned 2-1 victory over League 1 champions Cathedral Celtic at the Farm over the weekend.

They will now meet Watergrasshill United who were 4-1 winners over CFC Banteer B in the final at the Cross on Friday, June 2.

Cathedral worked their socks off and in fact, led at the break 1-0, but Coachford applied a lot of pressure in the second period with Adam Murphy and Cialan O’Sullivan eventually unlocking a Cathedral defence that saw their back four produce an imperious performance.

After a tentative start, Matthew Bradley aimed at trying to pick out Evan O’Sullivan, but Robbie Rourke read the danger well to make an important interception.

Adam Murphy then weaved his way past two defenders before firing narrowly wide of a defender.

Then, from a throw ball at the other end, Michael Peters knocked it back for Derek Heaphy who struck a decent effort over.

AOH Cup semi-final photos The Coachford side that had a 2-1 victory over Cathedral Celtic in the semi-final of the AOH at the Farm.
AOH Cup semi-final photos The Coachford side that had a 2-1 victory over Cathedral Celtic in the semi-final of the AOH at the Farm.

But, Cathedral got themselves in front when John Corcoran combined with Cian Madden before squaring it to Michael Peters whose stinging effort on target was parried away by Steven Murray, but William Corcoran was on hand to pounce and slam home the opener on 24 minutes.

Coachford responded immediately when Evan O’Sullivan tried to pick out the available Michael O’Sullivan, but Jordon O’Connor was smartly off his line to grasp on to possession promptly.

And when John Corcoran’s effort from distance sailed wide, Adam Murphy drilled his effort over.

After being awarded a free kick just outside the box, Matthew Bradley played it short and quickly to Mark Murphy who cracked an effort goalwards – only to see it graze off a defender before going narrowly wide.

As the second period took off, John Corcoran tried to reach the unmarked William Corcoran, but Billy Casey was tuned in enough to abort the threat quickly.

A free kick then from Michael O’Sullivan came into the path of Mark Murphy who failed to get a touch as he slid through inside the box.

Coachford needed to apply the pressure now as they chased the game and a lovely move that commenced with Aidan Buckley who played it short for Evan O’Sullivan to find Matthew Bradley who was supporting down the left flank.

The Coachford full back then played it short to Michael O’Sullivan who whipped in an inch-perfect cross for Evan O’Sullivan, but the midfielder headed over with the goal at his mercy.

Coachford were now frantic as they chased what seemed to be an elusive equaliser and when Billy Casey’s delivery from a free kick came into the path of Ryan Leahy, he failed to make contact with the ball.

AOH Cup semi-final photos Referee Jim Hennessy (centre) is flanked by Coachford's captain Evan O'Sullivan (right) and Cathedral Celtic's Robbie Rourke (left). Also in picture are assistants Steven Madine and Alan Bellmajdoub.
AOH Cup semi-final photos Referee Jim Hennessy (centre) is flanked by Coachford's captain Evan O'Sullivan (right) and Cathedral Celtic's Robbie Rourke (left). Also in picture are assistants Steven Madine and Alan Bellmajdoub.

Cathedral were defending as a unit and doing it so well, but Coachford continued to press with Evan O’Sullivan failing to get a touch to Casey’s low cross.

But, when Bradley’s corner skidded off Aidan Buckley’s head, the equaliser arrived on 73 minutes when Cialan O’Sullivan’s cross created problems for the Cathedral defence and when it bounced around the box, Adam Murphy was first to help it over the line to restore parity once again.

Four minutes later, Coachford grabbed their second when Bradley’s cross came for Cialan O’Sullivan who became the Coachford hero when he raised to send his headed effort crashing into the corner.

Coachford continued on the front-foot with Bradley finding Dara Lynch with a short pass.

Then, Lynch noticed Aaron O’Sullivan available and played him in – only to see the Cathedral keeper come off his line in time to produce a huge block.

But, it mattered little in the end as Coachford are through to the final

Coachford: Steven Murray, Billy Casey, Matthew Bradley, Aidan Buckley, Keith Linzell, Adam Murphy, Evan O’Sullivan, Mark Murphy, Michael O’Sullivan, Cialan O’Sullivan and Ryan Leahy.

Subs: Aaron O’Sullivan for Michael O’Sullivan (60), Dara Lynch for Cialan O’Sullivan (86), Michael O’Regan for Ryan Leahy (89).

Cathedral Celtic: Jordon O’Connor, Robbie Cunningham, Colm McManamon, John O’Sullivan, Colin Farmer, Robbie Rourke, Cian Madden, Derek Heaphy, Michael Peters, John Corcoran and William Corcoran.

Subs: (no subs used)

Ref: Jim Hennessy.

Assistants: Steve Madine and Alan Belmajdoub.

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