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Belvo see off men from the west!

UNDER-14 SKECHERS GOODSON SFAI CUP SEMI-FINAL:

BELVEDERE FC…………….2

WESTPORT UNITED……..0

By NIALL SCULLY

THE Westport Kop added much to the atmosphere at Clontarf. They had left Mayo before 9.am.

They brought the good weather with them. The sun shone on the pitch for all seasons.

The match ball was green. Belvo moved it neatly across the snooker table.

Two goals on either side of the tea won it. It was no easy task beating Conor Walsh.

Everybody was impressed with the Westport ‘keeper. He looks so assured between the sticks. He made several fine saves.

“He never looked in trouble. He moves his feet well. He reminds me of David Seaman,” said a man on the terraces. And a wise man at that.

Conor also strikes the ball sweetly. His first kick-out from his hands bounced to the feet of centre-forward, Adam Nugent, whose first-time volley brought a save from Adam Banim.

The home midfielder, James Byrne, played like Jack Byrne. Taylor Bruton sent in a packet of delicious treats from the right wing.

And the Belvedere defence kept the back door firmly bolted. Most of Westport’s avenues of attack led to the busy number 9, Nugent. Yet the nearest Westport came was a terrific shot from Leon Askin that shook the frame nine minutes from time.

At that stage, Belvo were playing the game out. And they did that comfortably.

“We were very happy with the display,” reflected Jimmy Jackson. “Semi-finals are all about making sure you get to the final.

“It took us a while to settle. But I felt we well deserved the win. The lads managed to see the game out very well.”

Until the opening goal, the visitors were well in the frame. “We started well,” judged Kieran O’Hora. “We knew we had to work hard because Belvo are such a good side.

“Conceding a goal before half-time was a setback, and then conceding a second early in the second half was a real killer.

“Belvo deserved it. They were the better side on the day. And good luck to them now in the final.”

Bruton and Darragh Murtagh went close for the hosts before Murtagh scored in the 34th minute at the Railway end.

Byrne clipped the ball through. Adam Murphy got there before the advancing ‘keeper and rolled the ball back across the goal for Murtagh to guide in.

Before the break, Murtagh almost had a second only for Lorcan Silke to clear off the line.

Five minutes into the second period, another Bruton delivery from the right saw Murphy pounce at the back post.

That second goal sucked much of the air from the duel. Yet Westport kept at it. Hoping for a kindly bounce that never came.

BELVEDERE FC: Adam Banim; Danny Jeal, Callum Goad, Charles McGee, James Ward, James Byrne, Taylor Bruton, Adam Murphy, Darragh Murtagh, Anthony Dodd, Sammy Somemi. Sean Cummins, Adam Eustace, Dan Bergin, Jamie Ryan. Managers: John Moore, Jimmy Jackson.

WESTPORT UNITED: Conor Walsh; Noah Massey, Lorcan Silke, Darragh Hoban, Conor Kelly, Fionn O’Hora, Kevin Ketterick, Daniel Kelly, Adam Nugent, Cian Halpin, Cian Gill. Cillian McTaggart, Eoghan Canavan, Leon Askin, Ethan Clifford, Jack Dawson, Conor Halpin. Managers: Joe Kelly, Kieran O’Hora.

Referee: Ian Bradley. Assistants: Ben McEvoy, Niall McLoughlin.  

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