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Harding Cup: UCD 2-0 University of Limerick

UCD beat University of Limerick in the Quater Finals of the 2011 Harding Cup.UL-Logo



UCD moved into the semi final of the Harding Cup following an enthralling 2-0 win over University of Limerick. Goals from Darren Muldowney and Stiofain Sexton in either half gave the Belfield Students a deserved victory.


UL were given an early boost when Cillian Morrison was forced to pull out of the UCD starting line up following an injury in the warm up. He was replaced by Alan Sutton, an enforced substitution that highlighted UCD's impressive strenght in depth.


UCD came straight out of the blocks and played all the football in the UL half. Stiofain Sexton and Alan Sutton brought terrorised the opposition defence from the first whistle and they nearly created a goal after 15 minutes. Sexton took on two players before playing the ball into the path of Sutton who narrowly missed the net from a tight angle. Minutes later Tristan Dent volleyed just over from an inch perfect corner.


UL were on the ropes and UCD were raining body blows. One in particular nearly knocked the wind out of any Limerick resistance. Sexton again ran at the defence before spreading the play to Darren Muldowney. His quick feet brought him inside his opposite number and his finish was no match for the UL netminder. The UCD goal combined with skillful work on the wings from Dunne and Muldowney threatened to end any Limerick threat but UCD could not find the decisive second goal before half time.


In the second half the impressive Niall Wright was in the thick of the action clearing the ball off his own line before minutes later almost guiding the ball into the Limerick net from a UCD corner. The UCD back four, marshalled by Dent was standing firm in the face of Limerick's desperate attempts to regain equal footing.


It was a corner that finally put the game to rest. Niall Hanley controlled the ball in the box and blasted an effort towards the top corner, a superb save from the UL keeper saw the ball drop at the feet of Sexton and he finished with aplomb.


UCD march into the semi final match with Mary Immaculate following a performance built on strong teamwork, character and no small amount of skill.


UCD: Barber, Westman, Dent, Keogh, Wright, Dunne, O'Brien, Hanley, Muldowney, Sutton, Sexton