Late own goal helps Drogheda grab opening night win over Waterford in dramatic fashion

Cameron Evans deflected the ball into his own net late on to hand Drogheda all three points on offer.

James Brown celebrates after Drogheda United scored.
James Brown celebrates after Drogheda United scored.
Image: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

Drogheda United 1

Waterford 0

Brendan Graham reports from Head In The Game Park

DROGHEDA UNITED NARROWLY defeated a brave and battling Waterford side with a Cameron Evans own goal in the 89th minute proving the difference in an entertaining game that kicked off the new League of Ireland Premier Division season. 

Drogheda got off to a blistering start asking questions of the Waterford back four inside the opening minute. Chris Lyons went close meeting James Brown’s looping cross yards from the goal but saw his effort glance just over the crossbar. A solid start for the newly promoted side.

Drogheda in the early stages were enjoying plenty of possession but at the same time were quite wasteful in attack. Against the run of play Waterford midfielder Jack Stafford went close to turning the game on its’ head with a powerful effort from distance but Odumuso was sharp to deny the young midfielder.

The Stafford chance was the wake up call that Tim Clancy’s side needed as they went agonisingly close to breaking the deadlock with fifteen minutes played.

A succession of corners saw both Mark Doyle and Darragh Markey go close to finding the lead. Doyle did well to rise highest and guide a header towards goal but it cleared the bar by inches.

As expected, Murphy was a busy man in the opening stages and had to be sharp again moments later with Darragh Markey testing him from distance despite having Chris Lyons racing into the box to his right.

fans-watch-from-outside-the-fence-as-chris-lyons-has-a-shot-on-goal Fans watch the game from outside the fence. Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

Chances did fall to Cameron Evans and Jamie Mascoil as the half came to a close but once more that lack of cutting edge in front of goal for the visitors reared its ugly head again.

The home side restarted the second half just as they finished the first. The probing Darragh Markey made light work of beating Mascoll before curling a teasing effort just
past the far post of Murphy. 

Experience was the order of the evening as the game entered the closing stages with Dinny Corcoran (Drogheda) and Daryl Murphy (Waterford) introduced in search of a winner. 

The first red card of the new season was shown but not to a player on this occasion. Waterford assistant manager Mike Newell was shown a straight red card by Kelly for getting a bit too strong with his vocals from the sideline.

With just one minute of regular time remaining Drogheda took the lead in dramatic fashion. Waterford centre-half Cameron Evans threw himself in front of the ball bravely in an attempt to clear a cross across the box from James Brown but ended up bundling the ball past Murphy and into the back of his own net.

That was to prove the winner with the final whistle blown moments later.

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brian-murphy-watches-on-as-drogheda-fans-outside-the-fence-let-off-a-flare-to-celebrate-their-goal Brian Murphy watches on as Drogheda fans outside the fence let off a flare to celebrate their goal. Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

Drogheda United: David Odumosu; Conor Kane, James Brown, Dane Massey, Daniel O’Reilly; Darragh Markey (Brandon Bermingham 57), Jake Hyland, Gary Deegan, Chris Lyons (Dinny Corcoran 69); Mark Doyle, Ronan Murray (Hugh Douglas 90)

Booked: Dane Massey [85], Mark Doyle [ 90]

Waterford: Brian Murphy; Jamie Mascoil, Kyle Ferguson, Cameron Evans, Jack Stafford (John Martin 75); Katlego Mashigo, Oscar Brennan, Adam O’Reilly, Tunmise Sobowale; James Waite, Prince Mutswunguma (Daryl Murphy 77)

Booked: Katlego Mashigo [54], Jack Stafford [72], Tunmise Sobowale [87]

Referee: Graham Kelly

Murray Kinsella, Bernard Jackman and Gavan Casey preview Ireland’s game against England and try to figure out where this team is going under Andy Farrell, if anywhere:

Source: The42 Rugby Weekly/SoundCloud

About the author:

Brendan Graham

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