Cork City vs Cobh Ramblers
By Graham Cummins for EchoLive.ie
Cork City got back to winning ways against Cobh Ramblers in the Cork derby at Turner’s Cross on Friday night.
Goals from Ally Gilchrist and Cian Murphy ensured that City earned the bragging rights in front of the 4240 spectators.
It was a convincing performance from City who will feel that they should have won the game by a greater margin. City controlled the majority of the game but wasted several opportunities throughout the match.
City made two changes from their scoreless draw with Longford Town with Jonas Hakkinen restored back in the starting 11 ahead of Kieran Coates, and on-loan Ipswich Town midfielder Matt Healy replaced Matt Srbely to make his first competitive start for the club. Ramblers’ line-up contained five ex-City players including Beineon O’Brien-Whitmarsh who scored in City’s 4-0 victory over Ramblers the last time these sides met.
It wasn’t the typical start you would expect from a derby game. Derby games are usually associated with having intense openings with little football on show but both sides looked to pass the ball out from the back.
City went ahead in the 14th minute when an inswinging corner from Kevin O’Connor found an unmarked Gilchrist, who had the simplest of tasks to head home from inside the six-yard box. Although it was a well-worked set-piece by City, it was poor defending from the Ramblers’ players who may have felt that their goalkeeper Andy Donoghue could have done more to help them after he remained rooted to his goal line as the ball travelled across his six-yard box.
Barry Coffey came within inches of doubling City’s lead after a clever dummy from Ruairi Keating allowed the Celtic loanee to find space in the box but he could not direct his effort on target.
City started to dominate the game halfway through the first half with O’Connor and Cian Bargary, operating as wing-backs, causing Ramblers a lot of problems.
City were having a lot of joy from set-pieces with their opponents struggling to defend against them. The Rebel Army would have been further ahead had it not been for two excellent blocks by Issa Kargbo and John Kavanagh to deny Bargary and Coffey, before Hakkinen steered his header wide from another City corner.
Keating and Cian Murphy were unable to add to City’s lead before half-time and Ramblers would have been relieved to have been only 1-0 down as the players headed to the dressing rooms.
The Ramblers’ players showed more fight in their performance at the beginning of the second half and did have chances to level the contest with O’Brien-Whitmarsh guilty of missing his sides’ best opportunity.
Murphy eased City’s worries in the 62nd minute after reacting quicker than O’Donoghue to the loose ball in the penalty area. It was Murphy’s first goal of the season and his celebration was that of a relieved player who understandably was desperate to get on the scoresheet.
The goal seemed to increase Murphy’s confidence with the striker looking back to his best. The striker was chasing every ball and not giving the Ramblers’ defence a moment’s peace.
Ramblers’ vulnerability at set-pieces was again evident when Keating found himself unmarked at the back post but his tame header was unable to find the back of the net.
|14. Kevin O'Connor||14'|
|6. Ally Gilchrist||14'|
|9. Ruairi Keating||15'|
|9. Ruairi Keating||62'|
|24. Cian Murphy||62'|
|64'||2. John Kavanagh|
|24. Cian Murphy||64'|