League Report: Waterford 0 - 2 Cobh Ramblers

Patrick O Connor reports from the RSC Waterford

Cobh Ramblers confirmed their status as genuine promotion play off candidates when they had a well deserved 2-0 win over Waterford at a rain sodden RSC Waterford on Friday night.

The win pushes Ramblers up to 51 points and maintains their third place in the table, and, bar a collapse, it should now safely see them in the hat for the play-off draw at the end of the Firs Division campaign.

The incessant rain all day in the South East had little impact on the pitch which was in remarkably good condition. However the game itself was not one to live in the memory, particularly in the opening 45 minutes.

Waterford for their part can have no complaints about the defeat, their second successive loss to the Cork side this season, and at times they played like a team which knows it has already made it to the play-off stages.

The opening half was poor fare with both sides looking out of sorts but the Blues did create the better chances but failed to take any of them.

The best of these fell to Conor Parsons in the 25th minute. Dean McMenamy put him through with an exquisite pass but Parsons dragged his shot to the right and did not trouble Lee Steacy in goals.

Roland Idowu was also through on goals five minutes later but he got his feet in a tangle and the opportunity for a shot on goal was lost.

The home side were to rue those missed chances as they fell behind to Ramblers early in the second half.

Mikie Rowe made his way into the box in the 53rd minute and was fouled by Derek Osede. Jack Doherty then confidently stroked home the penalty to leave it 1-0 to the visitors.

The second goal also started from a set piece after a foul on a Ramblers player by Parsons on the half way line just after the hour mark. The resultant free kick was floated into the box and when it was partially cleared by the Waterford defence, Brendan Frahill reacted the quickest and fired a low shot into the bottom corner of the net to double Cobh’s lead.

Keith Long made a treble substitution shortly after and while 17-year-old Romeo Akachukwu made an impact, overall Waterford huffed and puffed a lot but never really threatened Steacy in goals.

They were also faced with a very resilient Ramblers back four for whom Frahill and Charlie Lyons in particular were outstanding.

Overall, the win was well deserved by Shane Keegan’s team and they now have a home tie against strugglers Finn Harps next weekend.

The loss by Waterford effectively hands the league title to Galway United (they now just need one point from their remaining five games to claim the First Division title) and they themselves will look to get back to winning ways when they make the long trip to Longford next Friday night.

Waterford: Sam Sargent, Darragh Power (Sam Perry 68), Grant Phillips, Killian Cantwell (Adam Queally 83), Niall O Keeffe, Conor Parsons, Derek Osede (Ronan Mansfield 68), Shane Griffin (Romeo Atachukwu 68) Cameron Cresswell, Roland Idowu (Serge Atakayi 40), Dean McMenamy

Subs not used: Paul Martin (GK); Sam Perry, Andrew Baker, Harvey Warren, Anthony Adenopo.

Booked: Conor Parsons (59).

Cobh Ramblers:  Lee Steacy, Cian Browne, M McCarthy, Brendan Frahill, Charlie Lyons, Jack Doherty (Charlie O Brien 87), Mikie Rowe (Dale Holland 72), Alec Byrne, Tiernan O’ Brien (Luke Desmond 41), Jason Abbott (Adrien Thibaut 87), Wilson Waweru (Matt McKevitt 72)

Subs not used: Darragh Burke, Justin Equaibor, Darragh O’ Sullivan Connell, James O’ Leary.

Booked: Wilson Waweru (43), Brendan Frahill (75), Charlie Lyons (78)

Referee: Declan Toland

Attendance: 1,487

extratime.com Player of the Match:  Brendan Frahill (Cobh Ramblers)