U17 Report: Kelly Rescues Deserved Point For Dundalk
Dundalk Under-17s battled back from a goal down to earn a 1-1 draw with Shelbourne in their first league match of the 2017 campaign played in the AUL Complex on Saturday afternoon.
Liam Burns handed several league debuts with Kevin Kelly, Luke Byrne, substitute Luke Gorham and skipper James Prendergast the mainstays from last year’s team.
Uli Keller began between the sticks with Neil Kerr and Christian Jones on the defensive flanks at right and left back respectively. Mark Traynor partnered Prendergast in the centre of the defence with a midfield trio of Jamie Browne, Kevin Kelly and Luke Doherty.
Daniel Bogdan was the lone striker, supported on the left by Byrne and on the right by Jamie Winnes.
The first half, typical of an opening game, began slowly as both sides took a tentative approach. The best chance of the half fell to the home side but Keller saved well down to his right and it remained goalless at the break.
The second half was a much livelier affair as the Lilywhites began to take control of proceedings and began to push higher up the pitch.
However, it was Shelbourne who took the lead as they capitalised on a defensive lapse to open the scoring. The Dundalk rearguard switched off as they felt the ball had gone out over the end line but play was allowed to continue and the pull back was swept to the net by Ali Reghba to give the home side the lead.
They were soon pegged back however, as Kevin Kelly danced his way around three Shelbourne defenders before finding the bottom right-hand corner of the net.
Indeed, the away side could have taken all three points with five minutes to go as they had a free-kick on the edge of the Shelbourne box. However, the Shelbourne ‘keeper made a great save to prevent his side going behind.
And, in fact, they could have taken all three points themselves from a free-kick of their own but their last-minute effort grazed Keller’s crossbar.
So an away point gained and next up for the Under-17s is a home fixture against Athlone Town on the first weekend in April.
Shelbourne: Jordan Walker, Dylan Connolly, Peter Adigun, Kevin Mc Evoy, Luke Ring, Ross Strong (C), Jordan Adeyemo, William Honder March, Ali Reghba, Jordan Carroll, Michael O’Keane. Substitutes: Sonny Conway, Kian Delaney, Eoin Mc Phillips, Evan Clifford, Derek Hyland, Marcel Koty, Jack Patterson.
Dundalk: Uli Keller, Neil Kerr, Christian Jones, Mark Traynor, James Prendergast (C), Jamie Browne, Kevin Kelly, Jamie Winnes, Luke Byrne, Luke Doherty, Daniel Bogdan. Substitutes: Peter Shields, Luke Gorham.