Cork City – Stoke City
By Graham Cummins for EchoLive.ie
Cork City warmed-up for next week’s top of the table clash against Galway United by suffering defeat to English Championship side Stoke City in their friendly clash at Turner’s Cross on Saturday evening.
The game was a good exercise for Colin Healy’s side for their encounter against John Caulfield’s men, and the City player’s did not look out of place against the Championship side in front of the 1,940 spectators in attendance.
City started the game the better of the teams. Healy’s team looked comfortable against the Championship outfit.
Stoke were passive in their press out of possession. They allowed the City players time on the ball in certain areas of the pitch.
The Rebel Army had the first real opportunity of the game with Ruairi Keating getting on the end of Matt Healy’s superb delivery which forced Joe Burisk into making a smart save.
Stoke started to control proceedings midway through the first half.
The visitors took the lead through D’Margio Wright-Phillips, who is the son of former Chelsea and Manchester City player Shaun Wright-Phillips, when the striker beautifully controlled the ball and finished past Jimmy Corcoran.
Despite the difference in the levels between the sides; City did always try to play out from the back.
The players didn’t panic in possession but did lack that bit of quality needed to break down a well organised Stoke defensive shape.
City keeper Corcoran has seen his game time limited since making the switch to the club this year, but the 20-year-old would have been pleased with his impressive save to deny Josh Laurent.
Louis Britton was making his City debut since his switch to the club from Bristol City.
Despite the striker enduring a frustrating half; he did give City supporters a moment of what they can expect from the player for the remainder of the season.
Britton showed excellent quick feet in the Stoke penalty area to create an opening for himself, but he was denied by Burisk’s excellent save.
Stoke should have further their lead a minute into the second-half.
Connor Taylor found himself unmarked inside the six-yard area but somehow failed to make a significant connection with his headed effort.
City were doing their best to get back on level terms but were frustrated by cynical fouls being committed from Stoke on the rare occasions that the home side did threaten.
There was a lack of intensity starting to develop in the game due to the high temperatures at Turner’s Cross.
Both managers reacted to that lull by making several changes in the 63rd minute.
Those changes did manage to bring life back into the game.
Stoke maintained their control on the match without troubling the City goal, while the striking duo of Cian Murphy and Cian Bargargy, did ask questions of the Stoke defence.
Stoke doubled their advantage in the final moments when Jacob Brown fired past the helpless Corey Chambers.
Cork City: Corcoran (Chambers 63); Honohan (O’Connor 63) , Coleman (Walker 46), Hurley; Crowley (Doona 63), Healy (Crowe 63), Srebely (Bolger 46), Coffey (Bargary 63), McGlade (Umeh 63); Britton (Murphy 63), Keating (Kargbo 46).
Stoke City: Bursik (Bonham 46); Taylor (Forrester 63), Flint (Fox 63), Wilmot; Clarke (Duhaney 63), Laurent (Sparrow 63), Baker (Thompson 63), Clucas (Kilkenny 46), Tymon (McCarron 63); Campbell (Tezgel 63), Wright-Phillips (Brown 45).