Waterford United 2-1 Limerick FC

Limerick: John Tierney (49)

Friday 9th April 2010

Waterford United continued their 100% record in the league this season with a 2-1 win against Limerick at the RSC on Friday evening.

Willie John Kiely opened the scoring before being pegged back by a John Tierney header before an Alan Carey penalty handed Waterford their sixth win from six so far this season. This was by far the toughest challenge for the Blues this season so far as Limerick made it very difficult for the early pace setters in the league.

The Blues were without new signing George O’Callaghan because his international clearance wasn’t received in time to make his debut.

After five wins on the bounce, the Blues raced into an early lead. With just four minutes on the clock, Willie John Kiely pounced to grab the lead. From the left wing, Liam Kearney crossed to the back post where Martin Deady missed his clearance. Timmy Purcell collected and crossed to Kiely to score from 3 yards handing the Blues a dream start.

Waterford United almost doubled their lead after 13 minutes. Paul McCarthy was allowed too much time in the Limerick penalty area but his shot was straight at keeper Ryan. Kiely followed up with the rebound but couldn’t find the target.

Great one touch football by Kiely and Sullivan almost got Timmy Purcell in on goal, but Peter White slid in to block the chance. Kiely himself had a chance minutes later as he shot just over after good work from Liam and John Kearney down the left wing.

Gary Dunphy almost spectacularly doubled the lead after 35 minutes. The ball dropped out to the midfielder who caught the ball on the half volley from 35 yards that whizzed past the bottom corner, with Limerick keeper Ryan struggling to cover the ground.

Limerick almost grabbed an equaliser three minutes before half time. Martin Deady lined up a left wing free kick, and as everyone waited for the cross, he cheekily shot toward goal, only to see his effort come back off the post with Blues keeper Kevin Burns beaten.

Limerick had another great chance to equalise before half time a minute later. Shane Clarke easily got past Seamas Long on the end line and crossed to John Tierney but his shot was excellently saved by Kevin Burns.

Seven minutes into the second half Limerick grabbed a deserved equaliser after a goal mouth scramble in the Blues penalty box. The ball seemed to stay in the box for an eternity, and after Kevin Burns had missed his punch clear, the ball dropped to John Tierney to head into the net. This was nothing less than Limerick deserved having hassled and harried Waterford since conceding that early goal.

Vinny Sullivan should have handed Waterford the lead back immediately. Gary Dunphy made a superb run down the right wing before swinging in a cross to Sullivan who amazingly missed from five yards out. Both teams were creating chances but the clear cut chances were falling to the home side. John Kearney went on a mazy run from left back that brought him to the edge of the penalty box. He slid in Willie John Kiely, but he shot straight at Ryan.

In a five minute period in the second half, the turning points in the game emerged. First Seamas Long was lucky not to receive his marching orders. A long ball over the top would have set Clarke one on one with keeper Burns but Seamas Long’s outstretched arm blocked the ball. The Limerick players surrounded referee Keith Callanan, but he only showed Long a yellow card, much to Pat Scully’s annoyance.

Four minutes later Waterford regained the lead and scored the winning goal. David Grincell, only on as a sub two minutes earlier, was fed by James O’Sullivan in the penalty area. As he prepared to shoot, he was tackled by Peter White.

As the Waterford players, manager and fans screamed for a penalty, referee Keith Callanan waved play on. Assistant referee Kevin O’Regan, however, raised his flag straight away and signalled for a penalty. After consultation with his assistant, the penalty was awarded. Alan Carey stepped up and powered the penalty into the top left corner.

Limerick pushed for an equaliser in the final minutes but Waterford held out to keep up their winning streak. A crowd of 1003 were in attendance to see a truly entertaining Munster derby and an excellent advertisement for the Airtricity 1st Division. Limerick will feel they should have taken something from the game.

Waterford United
Burns; A. Carey, Murray, Long, J. Kearney; Purcell (Cambridge 73’), McCarthy (O’Sullivan 73’), Dunphy, L. Kearney; Kiely (Grincell 80’), Sullivan.

Substitutes not used: Hayes, P. Carey

Booked: Long, Carey

Ryan; Kelly, Deady, Stanley, White; Judge, Kavanagh, Hughes; Tracey, Clarke (Kelleher 73’), Tierney.

Substitutes not used: Cahill, Roche, Boyle, McGuinness.

Booked: Kavanagh, Judge, Tierney

Referee: Keith Callanan (Cork).
Official attendance: 1003
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