Keith Dalton’s deflected winner sinks Cork City in Cabinteely
Keith Dalton’s deflected effort on 56 minutes was enough to give Cabinteely all three points against Cork City at Stradbrook last night and, by extension, preserve their 100 per cent start to the new SSE Airtricity League First Division season.
2-1 winners at the expense of Wexford last week, Cabinteely squeezed in front when a Dalton delivery was diverted home by helpless City centre-half George Heaven. Despite their best endeavours in the south Dublin venue, the Leesiders couldn’t break down the hosts and suffered an early blow to their promotion hopes.
City’s starting line-up showed two changes from the side that had secured a 2-1 win over Cobh Ramblers at Turner’s Cross last Friday. Steven Beattie and Alec Byrne came into the side, with Gordon Walker and Cory Galvin the ones to make way.
It was the visitors who forced the early pressure, mainly through the set-piece deliveries of Cian Bargary and Dylan McGlade. Cian Murphy had a close-range shot deflected over in the fifth minute and Cabinteely netminder Adam Hayden produced a low save off an awkward Gearoid Morrissey strike.
The clearest opportunity of the opening period subsequently arrived on the first-quarter mark. Bargary headed towards the target from a McGlade corner on the right-hand side, but opposition defender Daniel Blackbyrne was ideally placed to clear the ball off the line.
The remainder of the opening period was largely uneventful, with neither Hayden nor his opposite number Mark McNulty being placed under too much strain. City midfielder Jack Baxter flashed a long-range drive over the Cabinteely bar on the stroke of 40 minutes, but the sides entered the dressing rooms at the break on level terms.
A McGlade free-kick seven minutes after resumption was deflected marginally off-target before the hosts had their first meaningful sighting of the City goal through Dalton moments later. McNulty was equal to his angled strike, but the veteran custodian was left helpless 11 minutes into the half when the Cabinteely skipper’s low cross-cum-shot deflected to the net off defender Heaven.
City boss Colin Healy responded to this setback by introducing Jack Walsh and Cory Galvin as a double substitution just past the hour. The move almost paid off for the former Celtic and Coventry midfielder, with Walsh coming perilously close to levelling matters on 68 minutes.
A recent recruit from Avondale United, the striker’s fierce volley was tipped onto the crossbar by the outstretched hand of Hayden. Despite breathing a sigh of relief on this occasion, the Cabinteely rearguard remained resolute in the closing minutes.
Beineon O’Brien-Whitmarsh also entered the fray as City looked to salvage a point, but Cabinteely held firm to make it two from two in the second-tier.
Hayden; Blackbyrne, Knight, McWilliams; Dalton (Watters 94), Aspil (Payne 84), O’Neill, Labutis, Casey; Waters, McDonald (Barnes 76).
McNulty; Beattie (O’Brien-Whitmarsh 82), Heaven, Coleman, Hurley; Morrissey, Baxter (Galvin 63); McGlade, Byrne, Bargary; Murphy (Walsh 63).
A Carey (Dublin).