Cork City FC suffered late, late heartbreak at Tallaght Stadium on Friday evening, conceding a goal seconds from time to be held to a 1-1 draw by Shamrock Rovers.
Colin Healy put the Leesiders ahead with a classy finish on 34 minutes and it was Derek Foran that pounced deep into added time to rescue a point for the home side. The result means another point on the road for Tommy Dunne’s men.
Photography courtesy of POSe Photo
The manager made two changes from the side that was beaten by Derry City last time out. Darren Dennehy came in alongside Kevin Murray at the back – Dan Murray was unavailable due to work commitments – while Adam Rundle started on the left with Danny Furlong dropping to the bench. The Rovers’ line-up also saw the inclusion of Darren’s brother, Billy – a former CCFC player himself.
The hosts were first to threaten – Ronan Finn and Mark Quigley combining to create the game’s first half. However, Dennehy was alert to the danger and got a vital touch to clear for a corner. Five minutes later, Gary McCabe drilled another chance well over the Mark McNulty’s crossbar.
The visitors’ first effort arrived with 15 minutes gone – winger Daryl Horgan managed to gett a snapshot away on target but Rovers keeper Barry Murphy was able to gather with little difficulty.
Billy Dennehy was next to try and break the deadlock and after being put clear through by Quigley, only an excellent tackle from Dunleavy prevented the Kerryman from testing McNulty. His brother Darren picked up a booking during the build up play for a professional foul, a booking that would have further consequences later on.
The vital breakthrough came on 34 minutes when Rundle’s determination saw him get a lovely ball inside into box, where Healy was waiting at the edge of the area to fire home beyond Murphy’s reach. It was the first goal that the Hoops had conceded all season, and they might have been 0-2 down shortly before the break when Rundle flashed a shot narrowly wide.
Rovers renewed their attack in the second half and did have a goal disallowed on 54 minutes when striker Quigley was adjudged to have fouled McNulty by referee Derek Tomney.
Dunne’s men had a genuine penalty shout minutes later when Rundle’s cross inside appeared to strike Foran’s arm. The referee waved away claims and Horgan quickly directed a follow-up effort on target, only to see it cleared off the line.
City were soaked up the pressure well at this stage but the game’s momentum changed on 65 minutes when Dennehy was shown a straight red card for a tackle on Stephen Rice. Dunne almost immediately looked to his bench – introducing Kalen Spillane and Denis Behan for Daryl Horgan and Daryl Kavanagh.
Rovers, unsurprisingly, upped the ante in the final stages – pushing forward in search of an equaliser – and both Ciarán Kilduff and Conor Powell had decent chances for the men in green and white. The goal eventually came in the final minute of added time – Ronan Finn’s cross directed home by Foran to ensure the contest ended honours even.
Next up: A trip to Drogheda United this coming Monday afternoon.
Cork City FC: McNulty; Dunleavy, K Murray, D Dennehy, Murphy; D Horgan (Spillane ’70), G Morrissey, Healy, Duggan, Rundle (Turner ’90); Kavanagh (Behan ’70).
Substitutes: Burns, Furling, D Morrissey, Buckley.
Shamrock Rovers: Murphy; Sullivan, Oman, Foran, Powell; McCabe, Robinson (Rice ’46), Chambers (Stewart ’82), Finn, B Dennehy (Kilduff ’60); Quigley.
Substitutes: Brush, Ledwith, McCormack, Sheppard.