Underage Saints Lift DDSL Dublin Cup
4 games played, 4 wins, 15 goals scored, none conceded. Yes, that's the result of the U16's squad's participation in DDSL / Topflight Dublin Cup which was held in the AUL over the weekend of July 22 – 24.
The team opened their schedule on Fri with an excellent 5 – 0 win against BC Fusion from New York. The American visitors had spent 4 days with Chelsea and 3 days wth Glasgow Rangers in preparation or the Tournament, however they were swept aside by an excellent Saints team ably led by skipper Noel Haverty.
The Saints went in 3 up at half time thanks to goals by Haverty, Kieran Cawley and Andy Haran. Further goals followed from Don Cowan and Barry Kenny while keeper James Byrne pulled off a magnificent save near the end to keep a clean sheet.
Next up were St Kevins Boys on Sat morning, despite making 5 changes from Fri starting XI the Pats boys dominated from start to finish and won very comfortably by 4 Nil with goals coming from Shane Brown, Kieran Cawley, Keith Fagan and Barry Kenny.
The big game of the day took place on Sat evening with the Saints up against their old rivals Shelbourne. It was a case of winner takes all with winner going into Sundays final and the loser having to be content with 3 / 4 place. Shels opened very brightly and it took some excellent goalkeeping from Byrne to keep a clean sheet at halftime.
The second half saw a complete transformation with the Saints producing a superb performance creating numerous chances. 3 minutes into the half and Don Cowan beat 2 defenders before unleashing an stoppable drive from 20 yards to give the Saints the lead. They never looked back and Cowan completed a memorable hat trick with two further clinical finishes. Substitute Andy Haran then scored the goal of the tournament when he fired home a tremendous free kick from 30 yards with 5 mins remaining to cap an excellent second half show. Final score St Pats 4 Shelbourne 0.
Sunday July 24; Final . St Patrick's Athletic 2 Rivervalley Rgs 0.
The Saints opened brightly against their Northside opposition and could have been three up after 15 minutes, however some poor finishing and inspired goalkeeping kept the score blank at halftime.
It looked as if the Saints were going to be frustrated as the second half continued very much in line with the first , the Saints in complete but unable to get that vital first goal. They were denied what looked like a perfectly good goal when Ciaran O'Connor's header from 10 yards was ruled out for offside despite there being a Rivervalley defender on the goaline beside the keeper.
The Saint management team decided to alter the formation and striker Andy Haran was introduced for Keith Fagan, thus prompting a 4 – 3 – 3 lineout. This bold move was rewarded within 5 minutes when Barry Kenny burst down the left wing beating 3 defenders before his shot was excellently saved by the Rivervalley keeper, however skipper Noel Haverty was following up and he fired home the rebound from 10 yards to give the Saints a fully deserved lead.
A second goal soon followed when Haran was put through following an excellent pass from sweeper Paul Mooney, rather than go for goal himself Haran unselfishly passed inside for Don Cowan to sweep home the second goal.
The Saints played out the remaining ten minutes in complete control and introduced further substitutes in order to give all squad members a run.
Skipper Noel Haverty lifted the trophy amidst scenes of great joy witnessed by the large St Pats support.
Squad: James Byrne, Robbie Hopkins, Ryan Gannon, Derek Foran, Noel Haverty, Ciaran O'Connor, Kieran Cawley, Paul Mooney, Andy Haran, Don Cowan, Keith Fagan,
Barry Kenny, Shane Brown, Ken