Regency Hotel Cup Semi-Final
McKelvey Celtic -2
Raheny United -1
By Keith Duffy
McKelvey Celtic’s victory over Raheny United on Sundayhas earned them a spot in the Regency Cup Final. The contest saw both sides that are flying high in Premier C fight for the right to face either Kippure Park or PFC White Eagles in the final.
Raheny United kept the ball well in the early stages but failed to create any clear cut chances. The Finglas side grew into the game which saw Jamie Martin creating the first chance of the game but his effort was saved well.
The game sprung to life when Graham Regan rose highest to power his header into the back of the net and give his side the lead. Raheny came straight back into the contest when they were awarded a penalty from referee Frank Bartley. Sean Kelly calmly converted the spot kick to level proceedings at the AUL Complex.
Stephen Harte was sent through on goal from a long punt up the pitch but his effort fall to hit the target. As the half grew to a close, both sides showed some excellent phases of play in a fluent first half display.
The second half saw McKelvey start the better of the two sides and when Jamie Martin won a free kick from distances Raheny retreated deep into their box. Thomas Adams delivery was met by Graham Regan who bulleted his header into the roof of the net.
With the green army starting to dominate proceedings Robbie Bartley had his effort ruled out for offside. Stephen Harte had the opportunity to finish off the tie but the ball smashed off the crossbar after a quick break up the field. The third goal never came but late into the game another goal was disallowed for Celtic after Jamie Martin was penalised for hand ball.
Raheny United failed to create any significant attempt to level the game despite a late corner kick which cause a flurry in the box. As the game was nearing a close McKelvey kept possession of the ball and held out to claim victory in an excellent encounter.