28 May 2022

UCD silence Finn Park to pick up first win of the season

In a contest that looked to be heading towards an uneventful draw, Liam Kerrigan struck a late winner for the Students

UCD silence Finn Park to pick up first win of the season

Rob Slevin of Finn Harps challenges UCD's Dara Keane. Photo Thomas Gallagher

A Liam Kerrigan header seven minutes from time gave UCD their first win of the season at the 15th time of asking and cut their arrears to second from bottom Finn Harps down to two points.

Finn Harps 0

Ollie Horgan’s side knew a home win would push their advantage over the Students out to eight points. However, in a match that looked to be drifting towards an uneventful draw, Kerrigan ghosted into the area to plant an Evan Caffrey cross home to silence Finn Park.

UCD edged the first half, with the home team slightly better in the second. Goals win games though and with neither side overly flush in that department - UCD had nine in 14 and Harps 12 - whoever got in front would have something to hold onto. In  desperation, Harps created late on when Eric Yoyo made a brave block after Luke Rudden had cleverly manufactured space in the area. Jack Keaney then threw himself to get in the way of a Ryan Rainey belter.

Mark Anthony McGinley in the Harps goal stood up well to deny Kerrigan on 26 minutes, with Keaney playing the diagonal through-ball to create the opening with what was the highlight of the first half. McGinley made a brave interception to avert the danger when Colm Whelan was lurking and then gathered comfortably as Dara Keane tried an overhead kick.

At the other end, Kian Moore wasn’t as busy to begin with. He saw a Barry McNamee shot deflected wide, although with three minutes to go to the break was glad to see Mark Dignan head clear off the line when Sleven met a Regan Donelan corner-kick. It was scoreless at the break.

Harps had opened their season with a 0-0 at Belfield and last time out, scraped their first win of the campaign with McNamee hitting an 89th minute winner against Shelbourne. UCD have yet to pick up a win this term, although would’ve been buoyed by their 2-2 draw against Dundalk, with Whelan’s brace sealing an unlikely point from two down, last week.

Ollie Horgan’s team were the ones pressing more in the second half. Moore, again, wasn’t overly busy. The introduction of Bastien Hery, Ryan Connolly and McWoods did provide some impetus. A draw, though, was always on the cards unless something was to land out of the blue. Kerrigan did just that. 

Finn Harps: Mark Anthony McGinley, Jose Carrillo, Ethan Boyle, Conor Tourish, Rob Slevin; Jesse Devers (Eric McWoods 65), Ryan Rainey, Barry McNamee (Luke Rudden 84), Regan Donelon (Ryan Connolly 73); Filip Mihaljević, Yoyo Mahdy (Bastien Hery, half-time).

UCD: Kian Moore; Michael Gallagher, Eric Yoyo, Sam Todd, Evan Osam; Liam Kerrigan, Jack Keaney, Dara Keane, Mark Dignan (Dylan Duffy 68); Colm Whelan (Alex Nolan 62), Evan Caffrey.

Referee: Paul McLaughlin. 

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