All-conquering Sheriff YC bag fourth FAI Junior Cup in six years

The Dublin club beat Kilkenny’s Evergreen at the Aviva Stadium.

Sheriff players celebrate their win.
Sheriff players celebrate their win.
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Sheriff YC 2

Evergreen 0

SHERIFF YC LIFTED their fourth Aviva/Umbro sponsored FAI Junior Cup in six years as a goal in each half earned them victory against Evergreen in Saturday’s final at the Aviva Stadium.

At the end of a first half they dominated, the holders forged ahead through Stephen Murphy’s free-kick and despite the Kilkenny side mounting a comeback after the break, another of the four Murphy brothers, Paul, sealed the triumph with a second goal.

It looked to be a frustrating afternoon for the Dublin side when their constant pressure failed to deliver the breakthrough until the final moments of the half.

When John Rock had been denied from close-range by a superb Packie Holden save, the ball broke and Evergreen conceded a free on the edge of their box. Up stepped Stephen Murphy to curl his low shot around the wall and past Holden despite the goalkeeper getting a hand on the effort.

Stephen Murphy celebrates scoring with Joe O'Neill and Gavin McDermott Sheriff's Stephen Murphy celebrates scoring the first goal of the game with Joe O'Neill and Gavin McDermott. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Lee Murphy lifts The FAI Junior Cup Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

By that stage, Sheriff had missed a litany of chances mainly through Sean and Stephen Murphy but Evergreen, contesting their first final since 1984, enjoyed their moments too.

A surge by Mikey Drennan to the end-line on the half hour resulted in a left-wing cross which Daryl Walshe was prevented from getting a touch to by the advancing Lee Murphy

The Sheriff goalkeeper was also at his best in batting away a thunderous shot from Chris Whearty after the winger cut in from the left.

Sean Murphy and Brian Jordan Sheriff's Sean Murphy and Brian Jordan of Evergreen FC in action. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Still, once Sheriff edged into the lead they held control. Apart from Whearty’s shot with 20 minutes left which flew over the crossbar and another effort late on by substitute Lee Delaney, Evergreen couldn’t convert their superiority of possession into clearcut chances.

As they gambled in pursuit of an equaliser late on, gaps appeared at the back and the clinical Sheriff profited. Darren Dunne teed up the overlapping Paul Murphy with a superb pass and the rampaging right-back beat Holden with a crisp shot.

SHERIFF YC: L Murphy; P Murphy, A Kavanagh, G McDermott (J Flood 70), J O’Neill; Stephen Murphy (J Murphy 90), J Lester, M Higgins (T Dunne 87), D Dunne, Sean Murphy; J Rock.

EVERGREEN: P Holden; T Earls (Corr 90), N Andrews, D Whearty (S Johntson), R Quane (D McQuillan 70), D Walshe, D Barcoe, B Jordan (L Delaney 59), C Whearty (J Owens 84); M Drennan, C English.

Referee: P Kilcoyne.

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John Fallon

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