by Colm Murphy, Newry City U14 Manager
Newry City played their first league match of the year away to Killowen Celtic. Both teams played an open entertaining game in a very sporting manner and it was Newry that started out of the blocks the quickest when Matthew McGinn slipped a neat pass that split the Killowen defence allowing Sean Mc Conville to slide the ball past the keeper. Things got better for Newry 10 minutes later when Tiarnan Murphy played a looped ball over the head of the Killowen back line for Tiernan O’Reilly to side foot past the on rushing keeper making it 2-0 to Newry.
The remainder of the half saw Killowen play a number of long balls in on top Newry’s defence but were unable to really trouble the away team’s goalkeeper.
The second half started with Killowen playing more ground football and a number of attacks nearly paid off only for the sharpness of the Newry defence and stand in keeper Nathan Crudden who put the keepers jersey on due to the regular keeper being injured.
From a quick break away the Newry forwards caught Killowen standing still at the back and were nearly in for their third goal only for a foul on Tiernan Reilly. Tiarnan Murphy played an excellent cross in from the resulting free kick which fell to Joseph Connolly who turned his marker and slotted into the net to make it 3-0!!
Although 3 nil down, Killowen never gave up and were rewarded soon after with a penalty. The resulting kick hit the post but Newry were not quick enough to the rebound and Killowen scored to make it 3-1.
The last 10 minutes were played at a frantic pace and again Killowen were rewarded with quick thinking and slid a ball through to make it 3-2! A tense final few minutes followed but Newry held out for a win!
It was great to see both teams giving their all and Killowen can take heart from a good team effort and will cause many teams problems as the league continues. Newry had many good individual performances on the day but overall it was team work that won this match. Hopefully we can bring this forward to our next game but in the end it was a great start to the league campaign!!