Cup joy for the Orchard boys

By Stephen Leonard

CHERRY Orchard prevail-ed against Belvedere to win out 3-2 and raise the Under 14 SFAI Skechers Cup at the Oscar Traynor Centre on Saturday.

While their opponents did reduce their arrears to a solitary goal in the closing ten minutes, Orchard manager Brendan Wynne insisted his side was more comfortable that what the final scoreline suggests and that they were full value for their victory.

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The Orchard team show off the prize they captured last Saturday.

“We created chances and it looked like we were going to go 4-1, but they got it back to 3-2” he told The Echo.

“Still we were very solid and worked extremely hard and when we attacked we created chances.

“Even when there was just a goal in it towards the end, it was us who were creating those half chances.

“Belvedere are a very good side, but we were very strong and the general consensus was that we fully deserved the win.”

The Orchard took the lead just five minutes in when Matthew Alonge mopped up a ball in by Divine Izekor who had slipped two challenges as he worked his way in through the Belvedere cover.

Parity was restored from the penalty spot seven minutes later, but the Ballyfermot side was back in front before the halftime break when Izekor again beak a couple of tackles before unloading a powerful strike to the target.

They made it 3-1 in the second half when David Monahan prodded home an in-swinging free kick that dropped to him some eight yards out.

It was nothing more than Monahan deserved in light of his rock solid performance at centre half, while Harry O’Connor turned in a great shift in midfield.

Max Mayson, who normally plays at centre forward, filled in very impressively at right back for the eventual winners who were unable to start their two regular center halves Cian Dunne and Jessie Stapleton in this decider.

“What really got us through that match was our team spirit” said Wynne. “Obviously they have that tactical awareness and the quality needed, but also the desire and the hunger to go out there and fight for each other” he stressed.

Unbeaten after their four opening games in the Premier, the Orchard can also look forward to a Regional Cup semi final against St Kevin’s Boys.

The team only recently returned home from a trip to Merseyside where they gave a very good account of themselves against the Liverpool Under 14s, losing out narrowly 2-1 in the end.

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