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Scoreless draw sends Waterford into promotion/relegation play-off against UCD

The Blues played out a 0-0 draw with St Pat’s in the RSC.

Phoenix Patterson forced a fine save from Pats keeper Vitezslav Jaros in the second half.
Phoenix Patterson forced a fine save from Pats keeper Vitezslav Jaros in the second half.
Image: Ken Sutton/INPHO

Waterford 0-0 St Patrick’s Athletic

Dylan O’Connell reports from the RSC

WATERFORD’S FUTURE IN the Premier Division now hangs in the balance as they failed to beat St Patrick’s Athletic at the RSC, meaning they will have to play UCD in the promotion/relegation play-off.

The 0-0 draw in front of a crowd of 2,612 has sent them into a one-legged tie that will decide who will play in the top flight in 2022.

While the Blues left with their heads down, St Pat’s walked off the pitch beaming as they put on a show for their travelling fans, who came south for a glimpse of the Saints ahead of next weekend’s FAI Cup final.

Stephen O’Donnell named a full-strength team featuring a host of the Saints’ top players including Robbie Benson and Chris Forrester.

This studded line-up had been conditioned before kick-off to pass the ball and play through the centre. The Saints did this by having Lee Desmond join their midfield, which added to their passing options in the centre. This created a few half-chances early on, most notably a free header for Robbie Benson which smacked off the crossbar.

The Blues had to wait until the 15th minute to get their first shot of the game, and this fell to captain Niall O’Keeffe, who fired well over the target.

When the Saints returned to their attacking formation, they focused much of their energy on Waterford’s right-hand side. They tormented the Blues with electric runs from Shane Griffin and Robbie Benson. This created one massive opportunity for Kyrian Nwoko to score, but he blasted over from six yards.

Despite all the dominance of the visitors, Waterford had arguably the best chance of the first half when a deflected shot dropped into the path of Green. He hit the ball first time and it floated across the face of goal and bobbed wide.

Midway through the second half, news of Finn Harps’ commanding lead over Longford was well known. This didn’t affect Phoenix Patterson’s evening, as he repeatedly ran at the Pats back-line. He was nearly rewarded for his performance with a stunning goal from outside the box, but Vitezslav Jaros guessed the direction of the ball and dived low to save.

The Blues finished the 90 miniutes with two brilliant chances in quick succession. Jeremie Milambo took the first, which was clawed away by Jaros. A corner was given, which fell to O’Keeffe in front of goal and his attempt to push the ball in was pushed out by Jaros.

Waterford FC: Brian Murphy; Cameron Evans, Kyle Ferguson, Shane Griffin, Anthony Wordsworth, Junior Quitirna, Niall O’Keeffe, Jeremie Milambo, Ronaldo Green (Jamal Dupree 77), Phoenix Patterson, Eddie Nolan (George Forrest 71).

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St. Patrick’s Athletic: Vitezslav Jaros; Sam Bone, Lee Desmond (Jak Hickman 45), Jamie Lennon (Nahum Melvin Lambert 71), Robbie Benson, Chris Forrester, Kyrian Nwoko (Kian Corbally 71), Jason McClelland, Billy King, Shane Griffin, James Abankwah (Ronan Coughlan 45)

Referee: Ben Connolly

Bernard Jackman, Gavan Casey, and Murray Kinsella reflect on Ireland’s stunning win over the All Blacks, hail Ciara Griffin’s Ireland career, and chat about Rassie:

Source: The42 Rugby Weekly/SoundCloud

About the author:

Dylan O'Connell

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