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Farrugia Fires U17s into League Final!

Match Report thanks to John HudsonSSE-Airtricity-League

UCD 2 (Neil Farrugia 49, 61 pen)

Neil Farrugia wore his shooting boots to the UCD Bowl once again last Saturday and the flying winger blasted home a second half double against Sligo Rovers to send UCD into the SSE Airtricity National Under 17 League decider.

St Patrick's Athletic will provide the opposition in Thursday night's final back at The Bowl after goals from Lee Rock with a brace and Cian McMullen gave the Inchicore Saints a 3-2 victory over Waterford United in the other semi final at the RSC.

Farrugia has made a habit of netting vital goals and together with the side's leading scorer Sean McDonald the pair have shared the bulk of the UCD total between them this season.

A fairly even opening half in which a well drilled Sligo had matched the home side in most area's remained scoreless at the break.

Farrugia had posed UCD's biggest threat for most of the half, first with some excellent crosses for McDonald and later when he got past full back Ryan Smith and fired in a couple of efforts that goalkeeper Lorcan Callaghan was glad to gather.

Sligo did have their best chance of the half on 21 minutes after Aaron Perry won the ball off Luke Boore and squared it to the unmarked Ruadhan Feeney but the Sligo skipper put his shot well outside the post.

Another Sligo chance came ten minutes later but this time Boore managed to clear the danger after Perry got though on goal after he slipped the ball past the outrushing Finn McGowan.

While on the stroke of half time great work by Yaya Camara set up Jack Ryan for a shot on goal but Callaghan did well to save.

The game was then won and lost in the first quarter of the second half with Farrugia playing a leading role in the UCD victory.

Three minutes into the half Farrugia unmarked at the far post shot home the opening goal with a well placed effort after a Ryan Meaney corner from the left was allowed to drift across the Sligo goalmouth.

The second decisive score arrived on the hour with Farrugia again involved after he was taken down in the area by Smith and the UCD winger then coolly placed the spot kick well out the reach of the Sligo 'keeper.

UCD were comfortably in control for the remainder of the game although the battling North Westerners did manage to deny them any further scoring opportunities.

While the impressive Feeney a younger brother of UCD's LSL winger Colm and full back Smith got in to test McGowan but the UCD 'keeper had little difficulty keeping out their efforts.

So UCD march on to Thursday night's final and a mouth watering Dublin Derby against St Pat's at The Bowl.

The Inchicore side managed by Jamie Moore who is no stranger to Belfield, are a formidable outfit and captured the Under 17 League Elite North Section in some style suffering just one defeat in 20 games.

They are also bidding for a league and cup double after reaching the FAI Mark Farren Memorial Cup Final where they will play Bohemians on November 9 at Richmond Park having knocked out UCD 1-0 in a first round tie earlier in the season.

Meanwhile, UCD will be keen to complete an unique double themselves by adding the National League Under 17 title to the recently won Under 19 crown.

UCD: Finn McGowan; Evan Farrell, Joe Manley, Luke Boore, Mark Dignam; Yaya Camara, Luka Lovic; Ryan Meaney, Jack Ryan, Neil Farrugia; Sean McDonald.
SUBS: Sean Quinn (for Lovic 70 mins), Luke Hannigan (for McDonald 75 mins), Brandon Perry (for Ryan 75 mins), Sean Prenter, Dylan Rowe, Dan Mullen, Charlie Smith.

SLIGO ROVERS: Lorcan Callaghan; Ryan Smith, Thierry Baba, John Mahon, Niall Monahan; Jack Keaney, Cian McAllister; Darren Collins, Liam Kerrigan, Ruadhan Feeney; Aaron Perry.
SUBS: Jack Hever (for Collins 53 mins), Mark Byrne (for McAllister 53 mins), Gary Higgins (for Perry 61 mins), Conor Burke (for Kerrigan 78 mins), Scott Lynch (for Feeney 80 mins), Luke McNicholas, Paul McDermott.

REFEREE: Simon Rogers

Assistants: David Berry, Philip Harrison.