UCD AFC lost 3-2 to Bray Wanderers in the FAI Ford Cup 4th Round.
Ford FAI Cup – 4th Round
UCD (0) 2 BRAY WANDERERS (1) 3
Kilduff 83, 84 O’Neill 10, Kelly 54, 67.
UCD Bowl, Friday 27 August 2010 ko 1945
By Brian de Salvo
Jake Kelly’s well taken brace of goals won him the Ford man of the match award but it was Gary Dempsey in midfield who probably had most influence on this extraordinary cup tie. The press pundits had already settled on Kelly by the time Ciaran Kilduff made a bid with two late goals of his own; a hat trick might have embarrassed the judges but it was not to be and the visitors deserved their passage to the last eight of the competition.
This Bray selection is not to be confused with the team that visited the Bowl in March. Only three of that side started. The colourful Dempsey is presumably between contracts; he must be the most valuable amateur signing of any season. But it’s not a one man band on the seafront; Danny O’Connor’s strength and Matt Gregg’s experience are also assets and the return of Pat Devlin to the dugout to conduct a charismatic double act with his wonderfully stoic head coach Gary Zamba adds gravitas to the camp. Of the new boys, Shane O’Neill is now that Bray rarity, an established goalscorer, Jake Kelly is flying and Derek Prendergast a solid presence in central defence.
In one sense the Bray and UCD squads have swapped status. The Students naivety is beginning to show through the fabric of their beautiful game and the more experienced players in their ranks are not compensating as well as they did. Notable exception are the 19 year old Andy Boyle who, even in adversity, continues to play with a calm maturity and striker Ciaran Kilduff whose goal tally of 14 goals in the prevailing circumstances speaks for itself. Paul O’Conor, still wet behind the ears, was perhaps UCD’s most visible contestant against Bray although whether he is a full back is debatable. His omission from the programme squad list, together with the names of Rusk , Wilson and Mulhall, is a sign that it is not only on the pitch that the team is under performing. Mea culpa.
The Seagulls took flight after only ten minutes when Kelly’s free kick from the right was headed back across goal by
To see more pictures from the game courtesy of Ed Scannell, click here.
Bray could have increased their lead twice within the 25th minute, first when Kelly beat O’Conor on the left and laid a tempting pass across goal only for the sprawling Barron to hang on to the ball at full stretch. Then Danny O’Connor sent O’Neill clean through to slot the ball past the advancing keeper but Boyle made a cool clearance on the line, even incorporating a well judged pass into his emergency action.
Just after the half hour the home side looked to have won a penalty when Kilduff’s solo effort seemed to have been ended by a push in the back from defender Webster. Instead, referee McKeon booked the UCD striker for diving. Kilduff did register the home side’s only valid effort on goal however, a header that keeper Matt Gregg caught comfortably under his bar.
The goalkeeping heroics were at the other end when Barron, off his line, compensated for any error of judgement with a fine leaping save to turn Dean Zamba’s header over and keep the game in the balance at the interval.
But Bray soon translated their superiority into goals. Kelly’s pace allowed him to retrieve Shane O’Connor’s clearance and, with Barron stranded in no man’s land, his perfect lob put Wanderers two up. But Kelly’s second goal, in the 67th minute, was his best. Dempsey’s determination survived two bites from Bolger and sent Webster on his way down the Bray right flank. His precision centre picked out Kelly and the flanker volleyed the ball sweetly into the net.
All the visitors had to do now was consolidate but they reckoned without a spirited response from UCD and Kilduff’s ability to snatch goals. As Dempsey faded the Students redoubled their efforts and Kilduff got two goals within a minute. The first was flicked home from Rusk’s flick on; the second when Mulhall shimmied past tiring legs and the striker was first to his low cross to register at close range.
But this rally was in the eighty third minute. Too little, too late.
UCD: Ger Barron; Paul O’Conor, Evan McMillan, Andy Boyle, David O’Connor (Brian Shortall 62); Greg Bolger, Robbie Creevy, Chris Mulhall; Dwayne Wilson (Keith Ward 62), Ciaran Kilduff, Graham Rusk.
BRAY WANDERERS: Matt Gregg;, David Webster, Shane O’Connor, Derek Prendergast, Sean Houston; Dean Zambra, Danny O’Connor, Jake Kelly (Daire Doyle 81); Shane O’Neill, Chris Shields.
Referee: David McKeon