Thursday, 14th December 2017
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SSE Airtricity League First Division

Waterford FC 4 - Cobh Ramblers 0

Waterford FC have moved within touching distance of the SSE Airtricity League First Division title after a dominant second half display yielded four goals and three points against second placed Cobh Ramblers played in front of an attendance of 1852 at the RSC on Friday night last.

The Blues did have a goal ruled out amid controversy on 15 minutes when David McDaid was fouled in the area and after midfielder John Martin scored from the breaking ball, somehow referee Damien MacGraith judged that the striker had dived in the area and awarded a free kick to the visitors before cautioning McDaid.

In a first half of limited chances that saw the Blues dominate, they didn't trouble Ramblers keeper Paul Hunt before creating a chance of their own on 38 minutes when Karl Caulfield tried his luck from distance but his effort flew over the crossbar of Matthew Connor.

Waterford had the ball in the back of the Cobh net for the second time in the game five minutes before the sound of the half time whistle when Kenny Browne knocked the ball into the path of John Martin and after his shot was bundled over the line by David McDaid, the flag of assistant referee Adam Tszample was raised in what was a very tight offside call.

The Blues did get their noses in front five minutes into the second half when midfielder Garry Comerford was fouled 25-yards from goal and Shane O'Connor found their net with the resulting free kick that didn't get a touch of David McDaid before flying past the helpless Cobh keeper Paul Hunt.

With the RSC rocking, things got better on the hour mark as a second Blues goal arrived as defender Sean Heaney got free down the left-channel before crossing into the area for John Martin to knock the ball down for O'Connor, who beat Hunt with a deflected effort from the edge of the penalty area.

A rampant Blues side added a third goal on 77 minutes to really rock the visitors when Garry Comerford won the ball in the middle of the field to turn provider for John Martin, who unselfishly squared the ball to David McDaid to touch home into an empty net.

After Derek Daly had an effort saved in the final minute by Paul Hunt, a fourth goal arrived in injury time when a sweeping move saw Shane O'Connor's cross from the right touched on by Anthony McAlavey to Dean Walsh, who found the net from deep inside the penalty area with a right-footed finish.

Waterford are now nine points clear at the summit of the table with a superior goal difference over both UCD and Cobh Ramblers and finally the people of this city and county can believe that a return to the top flight of Irish football is just around the corner.

WATERFORD FC: Matthew Connor, Conor Whittle, Kenny Browne (Jack Lynch `86), Patrick McClean, Sean Heaney, Paul Keegan, John Martin (Anthony McAlavey `83), Garry Comerford, Shane O'Connor, David McDaid (Dean Walsh `83), Derek Daly

COBH RAMBLERS: Paul Hunt, John Kavanagh, Anthony O'Donnell, Karl Caulfield, James McSweeney, Chris McCarthy, Kyle McNamara (Beineon O'Brien `72), Craig Donnellan, Ian Mylod (Stephen O'Leary `79), Darren Murphy, Cian Coleman

Referee: Damien MacGraith (Mayo)

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