|28/04/17||19:45||SSE Airtricity League||2017|
Over five thousand fans witnessed Cork City extend their winning streak to eleven games after a 2-1 victory over Bray Wanderers. A first half penalty from Seán Maguire and a Johnny Dunleavy header in injury time gave City the victory. Bray’s Derek Foran pulled one back deep into injury time but City saw out the game to give themselves a 12-point gap at the top.
The home side went on the attack right from the off, winning a free kick on the right hand side of the penalty area. Kevin O’Connor stepped up and his curling effort was pawed away by Peter Cherrie in the Bray goal.
The Leesiders kept the pressure up and were almost rewarded in the 10th minute. A long ball forward, flicked on by Maguire, landed at the feet of Karl Sheppard. Sheppard bared down on goal, his shot hit the post, the ball bounced back and hit Cherrie and went out for a corner.
As the resulting corner was swung in City were awarded a penalty for some pushing and shoving in the box. Maguire stepped up and coolly slotted the penalty home to give the home side the lead.
Once the ball hit the net the floodgates opened, and the chances flowed for the Leesiders. Two minutes after the goal Maguire had a chance at the back post, but he failed to control O’Connor’s cross.
On the quarter hour mark Maguire had another chance. He received the ball on the edge of the penalty area, turned and fired a shot goalward. Cherrie was equal to it though, saving well. This began a duel that would continue for the night.
Maguire had another chance on 17 minutes. Stephen Dooley pounced on a loose ball and fed Maguire, but he shot straight at the onrushing Cherrie.
City went close again on 24 minutes. O’Connor swung a cross in from deep to Sheppard but he headed wide.
The game settled after the half hour. A minute before the interval Dooley went on a jinking run down the left, beating three players, before cutting inside and curling an effort at goal. Cherrie produced another top class save, touching the ball wide.
The second half was a quieter affair, with clear chances thin on the ground. Bray enjoyed more possession as they pushed for an equaliser, but didn’t find much joy the final third.
City came close to adding a second ten minutes into the second half. An inch perfect ball over the top from Greg Bolger found Maguire on the left wing. He beat his man and shot from a tight angle, but Cherrie saved well with his legs.
Sheppard looked to have widened the home side’s lead 20 minutes from the end. A chipped through ball over the top from substitute Jimmy Keohane found Sheppard on the wing. He cut inside and smashed his shot goal-wards, only to see his shot blocked by a last ditch tackle from Tim Clancy.
The second goal did come in the 85th minute. City captain Johnny Dunleavy got on the end of an O’Connor corner and headed past Cherrie in the Bray goal.
Bray did get a consolation, as Derek Foran headed home in additional time. City held on though and came away with a deserved victory. City maintain their 100 percent record for the season and and make it 11 wins in a row.
Referee: Paul McLaughlin.