UL down DCU to reach Collingwood Semis News: results

Posted On 13th Feb 2023
Posted By Men's Soccer
Author Mark Nolan (Fixtures Secretary)
Location Jordanstown Sports Village

Collingwood Cup Quarter-final

University of Limerick 2-1 DCU 

University of Limerick secured a Collingwood Cup semi-final berth thanks to a 2-1 win over 10 man DCU at the University of Ulster Jordanstown Sports Campus this morning.

Goals in either half from Adam Foley and David McCarthy proved to be enough however the men from the Treaty County did endure a nervous end to the game after Owen Benson pulled one back for the Dubliners. 

UL got off to a strong start and came close to taking the lead inside the opening two minutes when DCU failed to deal with a Joey Rushe free kick however Tom Carney saw his effort cleared off the goal line. 

Fast linkup play in the midfield was creating a world of problems for DCU and when David McCarthy slipped a smart pass out to the left wing to Conor Butler a goal looked likely. Unfortunately for UL’s top scorer this season his well struck effort beat both the keeper and the crossbar with seven minutes played.

DCU were struggling to get a foothold in the game and Limerick deservedly took the lead after fourteen minutes. From a throw-in Rushe found Foley who held up play before slipping the ball to Rushe who had made a run up the wing. The Regional United man evaded several markers as he reached the area where he delivered the ball to Foley.

The Aisling Annacotty man unleashed a first time strike that was blocked by a DCU defender. The ball came straight back to him, reacting quickly he dummied a shot with his right and switched the ball to his left delivering a pinpoint accurate shot into the bottom corner of the DCU net.

Following that the match became scrappy as the Dubliners pushed for an equaliser. UL looked dangerous from set pieces but failed to hit the target on any occasion. 

A gilt edged chance would arrive after thirty-eight minutes. UL goalkeeper Joshua Coady showed quick thinking to spring a UL counter attack; his kick bypassed the DCU midfield to find Eoin Redmond on the right wing. The Corkman showed his athleticism to race clear of his marker and as he looked up he saw both Foley and McCarthy arriving on the edge of the area in support. He delivered a perfect cross but Foley’s shot squirmed just wide. 

Just a minute later Redmond found himself one on one with the keeper after Conor Butler’s intelligent flick caught the DCU defence off guard. The shot-stopper spread himself well to keep the deficit to just one at the short whistle. 

DCUd the second half with real impetus as they looked to restore parity, the UL centre back pairing of Carney and Conor Whittle saw off their early advances with relative ease aided and abetted by defensive midfielder Darren Butler. 

As they pushed for a leveller, gaps were appearing on the break for Limerick. Redmond’s lung busting runs were creating headaches and one such run would have a huge impact on the outcome of the game.

As he raced on to a ball over the top the DCU goalkeeper charged forward when Redmond shot he spread himself handling the ball outside the area denying a clear goal scoring opportunity. The referee was left with no option but to show him a straight red card.  

DCU were forced to take off a midfielder in order to bring on their second choice keeper, opening the door for UL to further increase their advantage in the engine room. Tom Kidd played an integral role in both defence and attack. The Galway man helped to stop DCU forays into the Limerick half while his smart flicks and short passes kept UL attacks flowing. 

Despite their numerical advantage UL sensed a one goal lead would not be enough as to their credit DCU continued to hunt for an equaliser with determination. 

The introduction of Bridge United’s Leon Daly paid dividends. The mercurial winger raced up the right wing leaving his marker in his wake. He cut inside, firing a low cross to the back post where McCarthy slid in UL’s second goal with seventy six minutes on the clock. The goal was the perfect gift for the Newmarket Celtic man who celebrates his birthday today. 

UL’s celebrations were short lived as just three minutes later DCU found the back of the net. A strong run up the right flank and a cross to the back post unlocked the Limerick defence. 

It was all hands to the pump for Limerick now as DCU desperately looked to take the game to penalties. Cullen McCabe cut out several advances launched on the left wing while Carney was immense, producing several crucial tackles.

It was route one football from DCU and the aerial prowess of Whittle proved invaluable for Limerick. Darren Butler marshaled the troops while also setting substitutes Ciaran Jennings and Ewan O’Brien away to ease the pressure. 

In the end UL were able to deal with the chances DCU managed to muster in the final minutes of the game and celebrated a deserved win at the final whistle. 

The Shannonsiders will now face Maynooth University in the Collingwood Cup semi-finals tomorrow afternoon at 14:30. The Kildare side ran out 3-1 winners over Queen's University Belfast this morning.


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