St. Michael’s too good for Celtic; Glengoole’s win puts Cashel in trouble

Clonmel Celtic 1

Clonmel Celtic 1

St Michael’s 3

Current TSDL champions Clonmel Celtic’s hopes of retaining their league title are now out of their own hands after they slumped to a 3-1 defeat defeat to St Michaels on Sunday last.

After a tight opening quarter of an hour, it was current Irish Junior international, Paul Breen, who gave the visitors the lead on 18 minutes, heading home from a Russell Quirke free kick. Celtic fought hard to get back into the game, and three minutes later, David Joyce brought a wonderful save from Aaron Wall, who injured himself in the process. Five minutes before the break, David Slattery volleyed home another cross from Quirke to give Saints a commanding two goal lead at the break.

The home side did have a good spell at the beginning of the second half but never really troubled the very solid Michael’s defence, apart from a Kevin Waters effort which almost beat substitute keeper Mark Lowry.

The visitors were content to surrender much of the possession to Celtic, but as the half went on, they never threatened to hurt Saints with that possession, and four minutes from time were hit with a third goal, as Richie Ryan dummied a cross from Pa Quinn into the path of Michael Buckley, who duly despatched it to the net from close range past the faultless debutant keeper Michael Boland.

Celtic did have the final say on the score sheet with a consolation goal from a free kick by Aaron Moroney but it was never going to change the complexion of a game that was long beyond their reach.

The Michael’s juggernaut now rolls on, and Celtic will be hoping for a favour, or three from other teams, but Sunday’s result will definitely have tipped the title race towards the Tipperary town side.

Cashel Town 2

Glengoole United 5

This was a must win game for both teams, and Glengoole United claimed three valuable points at Palmershill when the beat a depleted Cashel Town team, who did little to help themselves with some very poor defending throughout the game.

Glengoole took the lead after six minutes when Stephen Houlihan finished from eight yards after the Cashel keeper had made a good save, but the chance only fell after a defensive mistake had left the visitors in.

The visitors doubled their lead three minutes later when Michael Heffernan converted a cross from close range, and the home side were now completely on the ropes.

They did fight back into the game and on 20 minutes James Harding was quickest to react when he scrambled home a free kick for Town.

Eddie Walsh then looked to have put the teams level five minutes later, when he hit a rasping shot which was clawed away by the United goalie. However, Cashel only had to wait three more minutes for the equaliser, when the ball fell again to Walsh at the edge of the Glengoole area and he scored the goal of the game hitting a dropping ball on the half volley and giving the keeper no chance as it rose high into the corner of the goal.

Cashel however were only level for three minutes, when again poor defending allowed a corner kick to go right across the goal, where it was gleefully knocked home by Adrian Maher from close range.

The real killer goal in this game was the next one nevertheless, and again it went to the visitors, as right on the stroke of half time, a goal mouth scramble saw the ball end at the feet of Noel Hayes and he shot home with the defence looking on powerlessly.

Buoyed by their two goal lead, Glengoole soaked up the Cashel pressure early in the second half, and as the half wore on, the home side ran out of ideas and apart from a disallowed goal for offside, never looked like getting back into the game a second time.

The final ignominy came in the last minute, when Glengoole broke away down the left hand side, and the ball was crossed right through an empty goal area, for Daniel Rafter to complete the days scoring.

This was a very significant win for the away team, and completed the double over Cashel in their first year of Premier League football. It also helped them leapfrog their opponents, who with two games only left to play, are now right back in relegation trouble after looking only recently to have pulled clear of the drop zone.