Cobh Ramblers got back to winning ways on Saturday night at St Colman’s Park, beating League of Ireland newcomers Cabinteely 2-1. Second half goals from Kynan Rocks and Stephen Kenny secured the win for Cobh in what was an entertaining game. Sodiq Oguntola had made it 1-1 following Rocks’ opener but Kenny’s 65th minute strike proved to be the winner.
Stephen Henderson made four changes from the side that had lost 2-0 to Finn Harps the previous week. Eoghan Daly replaced Stephen Hickey in goal whilst Adam O’Sullivan and Kevin Mulcahy came in for the suspended duo of Graham McCarthy and Brendeán Frahill. Darren Murphy’s recent transfer to Waterford saw Stephen Christopher come into the side. Shane Hallahan was named amongst the replacements following his re-signing from Cobh Wanderers.
Cobh started the better of the two sides with James Furlong heading inches wide from a corner early on. Stephen Christopher also went close with a volley just inside the area. Cabinteely came into the game more as the half wore on and Daly was forced to make a fine stop from Conor Foley. The Rams did have the ball in the net late in the half when Stephen Kenny connected with Shane O’Connor’s low cross. It was ruled offside however and the teams went it scoreless at the break.
The half-time break saw a presentation made to the crew members of the LE Eithne, who were the club’s guests at the game, following their recent humanitarian mission in the Mediterranean.
Both managers felt that the game was there for the taking and there was real attacking intent once the second period commenced. Kevin Mulcahy was forced to head Foley’s effort off the line just minutes in. Ramblers took the lead on 54 minutes through young forward Kynan Rocks. Stephen Kenny, who was one of Cobh’s most prevalent attackers on the night, cut in from the right and sent a low ball across the box. It eventually fell to Rocks and he made no mistake from 10 yards, burying the ball past Whelan in the ‘Cabo’ goal. Kenny himself went close to doubling the lead minutes later but it was the visitors who scored next. Richard Purdy, who had only just joined on loan from Shamrock Rovers, cannoned a long range drive off the post which fell to Oguntola and the striker calmly slotted home to make it 1-1.
Not long after, Rocks almost grabbed his second of the game in what was one of the game’s finest moments. Dribbling past five Cabinteely players, he deserved a goal. His shot didn’t match the build-up however and it remained level. Cobh’s second goal did come soon after when Stephen Kenny excellently controlled Chris McCarthy’s long ball before shooting into the left hand corner from a narrow angle.
The on-form Purdy was excellent for the Dubliners on the night and he smashed the underside of the crossbar with a 35 yard free kick as Cabinteely searched for the equaliser. Cobh dealt with the visitors’ efforts, with James Furlong and Jason Abbott defending particularly well. Kevin Knight received his second yellow card in added time for a foul on Kevin Mulcahy, leaving Cabinteely to end the game with ten men. The game petered out after that and the Rams held on for another valuable three points.
Cobh remain in sixth place in the table following the victory, and are now just one point behind Athlone Town. Cabinteely are ten points behind Ramblers in seventh position. Next weekend sees the Rams visit rivals Waterford United. Cabinteely are also in derby action, hosting UCD at Stradbrook.
Cobh Ramblers: Eoghan Daly, Adam O’Sullivan, James Furlong, Kevin Mulcahy, Anthony O’Donnell, Jason Abbott, Stephen Christopher, Chris McCarthy (Ryan Goldsmith 77), Kynan Rocks (Daniel Barry 90), Shane O’Connor, Stephen Kenny
Substitutes not used: Shane Hallahan, David Curran.
Cabinteely: Evan Whelan, Karl Byrne (Stephen Dunne 82), Kevin Knight, Victor Ekanem (Josh Quinlivan 29), Jamie Broderick, Stephen Hanley, Richard Purdy, John McKeown, Michael Brown, Sodiq Oguntola, Conor Foley.
Substitutes not used: Aaron Brilly, Ross Broderick, Llyod Cairns, Daniel Campbell, Cathal Gilligan.