Match Report for U-19 Soccer Match
Teams: Gort Community School Vs Pallaskenry College Limerick.
Venue: Pallaskenry Town pitch.
As this was the first match of the season there was a sense of excitement to the match-up. The squad was managed by experienced manager Eoghan Hanley and new young gun P.E teacher David O’Brien.
The team lined up in a 4-3-3 formation led from the front by Rory O’Dwyer. Up front he was partnered by Leo Barcena and Daniel Garoco. The centre of the park was occupied by Darren O Donoghue, Conor Whelan and Peter Killilea aka Disco. At the back you had the veteran centre half partnership of Seamus Simons and Donal McMahon, flanked by James Cosgrove on the right and Conor Cosgrove on the left.
The first half didn’t light up the sporting world with both sides creating few chances, the pick of which was a Pallaskenry effort which had to be blocked off the line by Arek Mamala in goals. Conor Cosgrove came off early in this half due to sickness and Jonathon Cosgrove came on to replace him. The half ended scoreless but with both teams pushing for the lead.
The management didn’t have much to say at half time except to keep pushing and the team came out for the second half with renewed enthusiasm. Their enthusiasm was short-lived when straight from the tip-off the Pallaskenry No.8 hit a screamer from the centre circle which left Arek Mamala with no chance against the sun. Soon after this Pallaskenry doubled their lead and this seemed to be the blow that would put Gort away for good.
The management made changes to the team, bringing on Stephen McCarthy and Declan Fahey and changing the formation to 3-5-2. This formation meant a more attacking style with sub Stephen McCarthy and Jonathon Cosgrove pushing further up the field. This proved to be a decisive, tactical move and soon after Leo Barcena, who threatened throughout the game, danced his way into the box and won a penalty. He made no mistake from the spot, blasting the ball into the roof of the net. This left the game poised at 2-1 with the momentum now with Gort. With Gort now knocking on the door, it wasn’t long until they equalised. After great work in the middle of the pitch, Conor Whelan passed the ball through the middle of the Pallaskenry defence to Leo Barcena who calmly slotted the ball home.
With the fate of the game now firmly in the grasp of Gort they pressed on and with only minutes to spare Conor Whelan raced down the wing and after his first shot was saved he had the composure to finish. The game ended without any more drama and a cheer of relief went up from the Gort faithful. This win has given them a great boost for the rest of the season. The winner of the prestigious Man of the Match award of a priceless McDonalds McFlurry was Arek Mamala who pulled off some vital saves during the second half.