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It was a competent and efficient performance by the Youths in Ferrycarrig tonight in the League Cup, and it took three late goals by the home side to put a comfortable look on the scoreboard. The Youths started with Tamara Furlong, Nicola Sinnott, Jess Gleeson, Ruth Fahy, Ciara Rossiter in the defence; Maria Delahunty, Edel Kennedy, Kylie Murphy, Emma Hansberry, Linda Douglas in the midfield and Claire O'Riordan up front. 

 
The Youths had most of the possession in the first half with Claire O'Riordan up front on her own, but chances were hard to create against a very resilient Kilkenny United side who worked hard to defend behind the ball.  On five minutes, Claire O'Riordan had a left-footed volley chance, but the chance was saved.  With fifteen gone, Kylie Murphy was set up inside the Kilkenny penalty area but her shot went wide. The chances continued to come andthree minutes later, Ciara Rossiter had a free kick which went just wide. 
 
The Youths then went a goal up when Kylie Murphy found Claire O'Riordan unmarked inside the penalty area and she finished comfortably to put the home side ahead. However, Sylvia Gee then equalised out of the blue for Kilkenny when her shot from twenty yards out smashed off the Wexford crossbar and in. Wexford found it hard to create much against a renewed Kilkenny side until just before half-time. On 38 minutes, Emma Hansberry had a free which went just past the post and, just afterwards, Hansberry was taken down inside the Kilkenny penalty area to give Kylie Murphy a successful chance from the spot for 2-1 to Wexford. Maria Delahunty then shot over with only the Kilkenny keeper to beat when Claire O'Riordan notched her second with an acrobatic header to put Wexford Youths ahead 3-1 at half-time.
 
At the restart, Wexford brought on Rianna Jarrett for Maria Delahunty and pushed Ciara Rossiter forward to left wing in order to create more width. However, Wexford still found it hard to create many chances and Kilkenny came more into the game as the half wore on. Tamara Furlong in the Youths' goal was called upon to stop a Kilkenny shot from only twelve yards out but fortunately it was straight at her. Shauna Wall then came on for Linda Douglas and, later, Lolly Conlon came on for Ruth Fahy. With Rianna Jarrett playing alongside Claire O'Riordan up front there were now two targets for Wexford, and it eventually paid dividends when, with a few minutes to go, Claire O'Riordan set up Rianna Jarrett to finish neatly for 4-1, and then Rianna Jarrett headed home from a Wexford free for 5-1. Inside injury time, Edel Kennedy scrambled the ball home from a Wexford corner for a final score of 6-1 which was perhaps a bit harsh on Kilkenny who never gave up. Best for Wexford were Edel Kennedy, Claire O'Riordan and Emma Hansberry with Ciara Rossiter getting my nod as the outstanding player on the day for her efforts down the left wing.
 
Full time:  Wexford Youths 6 - 1 Kilkenny United

Authors: Dermot & Ronan McCarthy

 

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