The curtain finally came down on the 2011/2012 Season in the Final of the Glasshouse Hotel Champions Cup played in glorious sunshine at the Ray Mac Sharry Park on Sunday afternoon in the penultimate game of the season between the Titans of this season’s Super League Champions City United and runners up Boyle Celtic.
Glasshouse Hotel Champions Cup Final
City United 2
Boyle Celtic 0
The game played in tropical conditions started at a high tempo and City suffered a major setback after only ten minutes when ace marksman Gareth Kelly bit the dust in what looked like a harmless clash and was replaced Aaron Murrin.
Boyle Celtic were the quicker of the two to settle with Owen O’Donoghue using all his experience and guile to prompt his front runners Lee Mc Killen and Luka Roddy, assisted greatly by the pace of Michael Corrigan and James Carty.
City were under the cosh with Gary Rooney on overtime in midfield aided by David Adams but it was Clive Sommers and Paddy Conlon at the heart of City’s defence that kept them afloat with full backs Damien Scanlon and Stephen Halaghan putting in a good shift.
Captain Keith Nibbs gave his all and on thirty eight minutes he broke clear of the shackles of Alan Duffy and John Connolly, then with a one on one with Boyle Keeper and captain Kyle Suffin they collided and this resulted in a yellow carded for Nibbs.
Both sides insured a high tempo but despite good efforts at either end both keepers were in tip top form with Tony Clarke in the City goals the busier of the two in a scoreless but pulsating first half. One wondered could the pace be maintained in the seconded period with the heat sapping conditions.
Eight minutes into the second good link up play between Christopher Kelly and David Adams saw the ball floated into the penalty area where Keith Nibbs chested the ball down turn and shot, only to see his fine effort go just wide of the near post.
Lee Mc Killen was the next casualty on 65 minutes suffering an injury that resulted in him being substituted and Boyle Celtic had now lost one of their most lethal finishers.
In the 76th minute the deadlock was broken as Christopher Kelly fired City into the lead following a goal mouth scramble. Kelly reacted quickest to fire the ball over the line and City were heading for the double.
Two minutes from time came the highlight of the day as City captain Keith Nibbs controlled the ball at the edge of the penalty area and with the sweetest of touches lobbed Kyle Suffin in the Boyle Celtic goal to capture the Champions Cup for City United, who on the day put in a shift worthy of Champions.
Tony Clarke, Damien Scanlon, Stephen Halaghan, Clive Somers, Paddy Conlon, David Adams, Niall Howley, Garry Rooney, Keith Nibbs (Capt), Gareth Kelly, Christopher Kelly, Kevin Murrin, Aaron Murrin, David Blaine, Gary Mc Cartney, Lee Marshall, Johnny Lynch, Glen McCormack, Calam Murray. Sub: Aaron Murrin for Gareth Kelly (10 mins).
Kyle Suffin (Capt), Ciaran Harrington, Jake McCrann, John Connolly, Alan Duffy, Owen O’Donoghue, Brian McCrann, Mick Corrigan, Lee Mc Killen, Luka Roddy, James Carty, Martin Mullen, Colm Rush.