Wake up, watch the soccer, drink the coffee!
Great to smell freshly brewed coffee on sale in the coffee shop this Saturday. Many thanks to Derek and Leanne Downes who facilitated this. Thanks also to the volunteers/baristas who operate the shop and keep the coffee flowing!
All players need to register with the club. Registration is through https://www.myclubfinances.com/memberships_cart_m.asp?LL_ID=845&intMF_ID=2925#Anchor
Aisling Annacotty 2-0 Tulla Utd
The dark days of January were lit up Sunday evening by one of the best underage girls soccer matches anyone watching could remember. With Annacotty on maximum points, and last season’s champions Tulla on one loss, both sides knew this was a vital game, and it showed in the frantic pace and high-quality football from start to finish. The generally taller and stronger Tulla girls were surprised to be matched in the physical stakes by significantly smaller players, such as Taylor McEvoy who was utterly fearless in the challenge. Tulla marginally shaded things in the first 30 minutes, and goalkeeper Abby McCarthy was kept busy playing sweeper as a succession of balls were played in behind our defence. It was refreshing to see some great composure shown by the Annacotty back five, as they played balls back to keeper and out to the wings. An undoubted turning point came when Tulla captain Aoife Floyd received the ball on the penalty spot, swivelled onto her right foot and lined up what looked like a certain goal, only to be thwarted when Charlie Hanrahan threw herself in front of the ball to execute a superb block. For the rest of the half Annacotty dominated, and they got their reward, when Aisling Kennedy, in a move reminiscent of Thierry Henry’s famous strike against United, flicked the ball over her shoulder, swivelled on a sixpence, let the ball bounce once, and caught it sweetly on the volley to smash it over the keeper’s head from 20 yards. It could have been two before half time, when Kennedy touched a neat lay-off to Rachel O’Dell whose 22-yard effort was six inches over. The pace if anything increased in the second half, and Annacotty were undoubtedly the better team. The defence of Hanrahan, Jade O’Connor, captain Bronagh Kelly and Sarah Cleary were rock solid, and O’Dell and Emma Costello began to get a grip in centre midfield. Some of the play was a joy to watch, with Emma Donoghue quite superb on the left wing. One play in particular, where she kept the ball by the corner flag, wriggled past the defender and whipped in a cross against a strong wind which flashed across the goal, just underlined her status as perhaps the best crosser of a ball in Limerick underage football, male or female. The intensity of the exchanges was underlined when McEvoys’s bravery led her to having to limp off, and O’Dell had to take a break when a ball caught her full in the face from two yards. On came young Alicia O’Callaghan, who proved a revelation at left-back, strong in the tackle and hugely composed on the ball. Another (just-turned) 14-year-old, Laoise Ní Aodha, was displaying her talents with some excellent layoffs, one in particular pinged 20 yards across the box, perfectly into the path of an onrushing Cleary. Indeed Cleary, now in a more forward position, was doing a lot of onrushing, and in one superb Brian Robson-like burst into the box, beat two players only to flash the ball just wide. With the Tulla keeper kept busy with other strong shots from Costello and Cleary, Annacotty were well on top, but Tulla were by no means out of it and forced a number of corners, and looked dangerous on the break. It was a massive relief then, when with 15 minutes to go, the ball finally fell into Ní Aodha’s path inside the box, and despite the attempted block, she smashed it to the net from 15 yards. Job done, she made way for Amy Costello who kept the Tulla defence occupied with plenty of movement in the last 10 minutes. At the whistle, both sets of coaches and supporters were in agreement that they had witnessed an outstanding game, and indeed many of the opposing players were chatting about their upcoming game as teammates against Wexford U18s next weekend.
Under 13 Aisling Annacotty 0-5 St Kevins Boys. Last 32 of the SFAI National Cup
U15 Mervue United 4 Aisling Annacotty 1. Last 32 of the SFAI National Cup. Hard luck to both teams.