Feenagh claim only major upset in Desmond Cup opening round

The highly coveted Weekly Observer Desmond Cup took centre-stage this weekend. Last seasons competition had a plethora of upsets throughout the knockout competition. Shannonside B upsetting then Premier side Granagh United, Feenagh eliminating neighbours Broadford United as well as Dromore United’s incredible run to silverware. Once again, Feenagh were at it as many of the big names were comfortable in reaching round two.

As well as dethroning the holders Abbeyfeale United away from home, the Kildimo Pallaskenry also accounted for neighbours Breska Rovers B (Division Three), Kilcornan and Rathkeale (both Premier Division) before meeting Glin Rovers in the final. The quality in the final was not of the highest order, however, it mattered little as United held their nerve to win on spot kicks.

This season, the draw has been done in totality, so sides can be excited in plotting their route through to the latter rounds. The weather has meant that the form guide it a tentative guide what may unfold, with many sides enduring a really fragmented winter and early spring.


Weekly Observer Desmond Cup 1st Round

Ballingarry B 2-3 Carrig Celtic, (AET)
While this reporter made a prediction that the side who started strongest would prevail, it was in face the opposite. Holding a two-goal buffer at the half-time interval, thanks to Darren Geary and Tiernan Fitzgerald, Ballingarry will be bitterly disappointed to exit the competition. Goals from Ian Mackessy and Brian Foley in the final 10 minutes forced extra time at the Paddocks before the goal poacher supreme, Seanie King, netted the winner.

Glantine B 0-2 Askeaton-Kilcornan A
Goals from Ken O’Donoghue and Sam Duggan were enough to help Askeaton Kilcornan over the side currently rock bottom of the Desmond League, Glantine B. The most surprising aspect was the margin of victory, as Askeaton Kilcornan have shown they can find the net. An underwhelming evening was all about getting the job done, as Askeaton Kilcornan look to return to better form after a very disappointing start to 2024. For Glantine B, they may take encouragement of how competitive they are, but finding the net is now their biggest hurdle, having tightened up somewhat at the back in their some recent outings.

Ballysteen 0-4 Broadford United
This tie was switched to Cove Park well in advance and it pitted the current Division Three champions against the reigning Premier Division title holders. Broadford took full advantage as goals from Alan Fitzpatrick (2), Jack Pierce and Brian O’Sullivan saw them into the second round.

Glin Rovers 2-1 Ballingarry A
It was arguably the tie of the round, as the two recent cup winners battled on Sunday morning. All of the action was packed into the period just before half-time. Glin Rovers eventually prevailed, despite playing much of this contest with 10 men. Zach Behan’s header gave them the lead before captain Dean Clancy levelled for the visitors. A red card for handball on the line put Rovers on the backfoot but the responded immediately to retake the lead. A penalty of their own, taken by Gary Culhane, also for handball made it 2-1. Try as the might Ballingarry were unable to break down a stubborn Glin in the second period meaning the men from the Estuary advance to face Carrig Celtic.

Mountcollins 0-2 Abbeyfeale United A
There was plenty of motivation for both sides as the neighbours collided in Mountcollins. In a tight hard-fought encounter, the Premier Division side eventually got on top and strikes from Dylan Murphy and Jack Quinlivan put the 2022 winners into round two.

Rathkeale A 2-0 Shannonside
There is little doubt that Rathkeale have been in renewed form since the turn of the year. Like last year they are getting the balance of defence at attack correct as they look to bag one, if not both of the major titles still available to them. They got over a sticky Shannonside outfit with goals from Dean Maune and Jack Hennessy.

Dromore United A 3-1 Knockaderry
The holders did enough to book their spot in the second round, with all the games goals arriving in the opening half in Pallaskenry. These sides are on a different trajectory on the league front and Dromore are keen to prove they still have the cup magic. Goals from Oran Kelly (2) and Conor Staff were enough to keep the silverware in their grasp for another while.

Feenagh 1-1 Athea United (Feenagh win 5-4 on penalties AET)
After making the semi-finals last season, there was another scalp claimed by Feenagh who, again, progressed via a penalty shootout. Each of their three wins in the competition last year were via spot-kicks and they took Premier side Athea United out from 12 yards. Scoreless al the way through 90 minutes, the sides quickly exchanged goals. Luke Ryan’s penalty gave Feenagh the advantage before Danny Stack levelled it with a long-range free-kick that went all the way in.

After both converted four from five, Dan Gayer saved the 6th penalty from Untied, before Dylan Murray O’Connor sent them through by converting his effort.

Kilcolman Rovers 1-5 Newcastle West Reserves
Conceding home advantage by moving this to Woodfield Estate, Kilcolman Rovers were always up against it against high flying Newcastle West of a division above. Goals from Josh Joyce and Price Moyo as well as a hat-trick from Tony Quaid. He showed his obvious quality to ease them into round two, including his third via the penalty spot.

Rathkeale B 0-2 Creeves Celtic
A short trip up to Rathkeale could have presented Creeves with some issues, however, as their form line has been strong all winter, they had too much for struggling Rathkeale B. Kevin Guina and Bryan Meade were on target but they didn’t have it all their own way, with Kevin Mee, their goalkeeper, saving a Rathkeale penalty which would have tied the game at 1-1.

St. Itas 2-4 Breska Rovers A
Premier Division Breska eased into round two in Ashford, after getting over the banana skin of Division One leaders, St. Ita’s. Captain Kevin Foster had the Clarina side ahead at half-time before Karl Buckley pounced for their second. Darragh Lane cut the gap entering the final 10 minutes but Buckley and Darragh O’Sullivan made the tie safe for those in yellow. A late Lane effort gave the home side some consolation.

Askeaton-Kilcornan B V Glantine
With a shortage off referees on Sunday, Glantine’s trip to Kilcornan was postponed.

Dromore United B V Newcastle West Town
Postponed, Kildimo unplayable. Newcastle West gain home advantage for the re-fixture.

Granagh United V Glin Rovers B
Postponed, Granagh unplayable. Glin Rovers B gain home advantage for the re-fixture.


Limerick Desmond Youths Cup Semi Final
Dromore United 3-4 Newcastle West Town
Newcastle West Town shaded a thrilling Desmond Youths Cup semi-final, and exacted some revenge for their final loss against Dromore United last season. Seven goals in an end-to-end contest eventually saw the Magpies book their final spot in the 90 minutes. Josh Joyce was again the hero. A regular on the scoresheet, he is following behind his father Saoirse in netting vital goals for Newcastle West. His 85th minute winner was his second goal of the game, with Cathal Hayes also scoring twice. Jack Butler, Jake Higgins and Ross Allen were on target for United.

Broadford United face Glin Rovers on Tuesday, to see who will face Town in the decider.

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