Brave Cup run ends in narrow defeat for Slane

O'Hara Cup Final: Dollingstown Reserves v Moneyslane Reserves:Captain Neil Hanna  � Edward Byrne Photography INBL18-225EB
O'Hara Cup Final: Dollingstown Reserves v Moneyslane Reserves:Captain Neil Hanna � Edward Byrne Photography INBL18-225EB

Thursday saw the biggest Cup game in the history of Moneyslane Reserves but unfortunately for them, the result didn’t go their way.

They were edged out by an experienced Dollingstown second-string in the O’Hara Cup decider despite what was an impressive display by the Slane lads.

Moneyslane Reserves manager Gareth McDowell had already steered the team magnificently to league glory with four games to spare and has now added to that the experience of playing in a Cup final.

It was the biggest match any of the club’s young players had been involved in but playing in front of a massive crowd and a sea of blue and white only spurred them on.

Moneyslane settled into the game quickly, matching Dollingstown in all areas of the pitch. Slane even felt aggrieved not to be awarded an early penalty as Mark Anderson went down after delivering a cross.

Mid-way through the first half, Dollingstown took the lead as one of their midfielders found himself in acres of space and fired home from 20 yards to give them a 1-0 advantage. Within minutes, they doubled their lead as Moneyslane had switched off and let ex-Slane man, Chris Loney in to score to make it 2-0. Things could have gone from bad to worse as another Dollingstown effort went narrowly wide of the post soon after.

However, Moneyslane grabbed themselves a lifeline in the game as a Jason Fairley corner was met by Mark Anderson at the back post to half Dollingstown’s lead to 2-1 at half-time.

Moneyslane started the second half as they finished the first and Jordan Fairley had a great chance to draw the Slane level early in the second half but the Dollingstown keeper saved well.

Either team created very few clear-cut chances in the second half and both keepers had little to do. Unfortunately for Slane, it wasn’t to be this time for them as the referee blew the whistle and the game finished 2-1 to Dollingstown.

Nonetheless, the Cup Final Party was in full swing at Jubilee Park after the match as the players and supporters returned.