AUL Division 3 Sunday
Raheny Utd 2-1 Stamullen FC
Raheny Utd welcomed Stamullen FC to town on Friday night and in a game that each team will feel like they controlled for large periods it was the North Dublin side who came out on top with an injury time winner.
In the opening exchanges it was the home side who seemed to be the hungrier and the Stamullen keeper had to make a couple of top saves from Raheny attacks. Stopping a near post drive in one and coming out for a one on one with the Raheny left winger bearing down on him and denying a score. When he was beaten for the first time he could only watch as the ball drifted inches wide of the far post from another home chance.
In football if you don’t take your chances though you can get punished and that’s what happened here as Stamullen pushed forward with a quick counter attack. The ball could only be half cleared by the Raheny defence and when it dropped to Stamullen’s number 9 he picked out an onrushing team mate who coolly finished past the keeper. Advantage Stamullen, but not for long, when on 39 minutes an attack down the right wing led to a bit of space for Nolan. He looked up and his cross come shot nestled right into the far top corner. Only he knows if he meant that one.
After the break both sides had a couple of early chances with the home keeper getting his gloves warm again after the defence looked for offside but the finish lacked the power required to take the lead. Just approaching the hour mark Stamullen will wonder how they didn’t take it at a second opportunity. Working the ball across the pitch well a low cross was somehow prodded over the bar from inside the six yard box when it seemed harder to miss.
Raheny won a couple of corners in succession before Stamullen’s Mark Byrne was unlucky not to score after creating a half yard on the edge of the box and sending in low powerful drive that the keeper got down well to stop. As it seemed we were destined for a draw both sides started to push forward as the game entered injury time. First Stamullen had two chances when a cross was miscontrolled but fell to an attacker on the penalty spot and he smashed it towards the top corner only for the Raheny keeper to make an acrobatic stop. He quickly got back to his feet to block the rebound and smother the ball at the feet of another Stamullen player.
Then right at the death the home side scored what proved to be the winner. A high ball was put into the box and a lapse in concentration meant it fell to a Raheny player in the box who was left with the simple task of finishing past the Stamullen stopper. A harsh end for the visitors but the home side will be delighted with their second win in a row.
Raheny travel to winless Lusk next time out while Stamullen host high flying Skryne.