Newry City moved top of Mid Ulster A with a comprehensive win away to local rivals Camlough Rovers on Saturday. In a tempestuous game which was certainly not helped by referee Caldwell Newry sealed the points late on with two goals in final 10 minutes after the referee had dismissed three players but in truth Newry were better all over the pitch for the majority of the 90 minutes which pleased manager Darren Mullen “We are now getting the rewards for the hard work the boys put in at training. We are a stronger team this season and will try to play football. Certainly I’d like the referee to protect footballers but when that doesn’t happen you just have to knuckle down and compete and the boys did that today. Our back four and Niall when he came on were solid and the odd time Camlough got past them Murphy was sharp. Our midfield are playing really well at the moment and the front men are scoring goals, so I can’t complain. But its early days!”
It was the home side who had the first goal scoring chance only minutes into the game when a Newry corner was cleared up field, the ball falling into the path of Declan Monaghan who forced Murphy into a fine save as he pushed the Camlough mans low snap shot for a corner.
Newry were gifted the opening goal of the game minutes later when a long Murphy kick out appeared to be going all the way to his opposite number Sean McDonald in the Camlough goal only for the keeper to fumble the ball on the edge of his box, punished for the mistake by Paddy Mooney who was the first to react to the loose ball which he rolled into the empty net to put Newry a goal up.
The visitors felt they should have had the chance to double the advantage after 10 minutes when Decky Carville meandered his way through players into the Camlough box only to be taken down by an outstretched Camlough leg, referee Caldwell one of the few who did not agree with Carville’s call for a penalty.
Newry continued on the front foot, Ian Curran playing at left back curled a superb ball down the line into the path of Jimmy Walker who turned his marker before finding McCann on the edge of the box, the Newry midfielder firing over McDonalds cross bar.
Camlough replied with a long range effort of their own on 25 minutes, Gregory MCabe receiving a short free and blasting a shot from 30 yards which Murphy did well to get his hands to, Monaghan’s attempt to latch onto the rebound thwarted by the referees whistle for offside.
The last chance of the half also came Camloughs way. A long hopeful clearance out of their own half looked to be going over the end line only to be retrieved by Jordan King, his low cross met by a group of feet, the ball looping up towards the top corner of the Newry goal bringing another excellent diving save by Murphy to tip it over his cross bar to preserve the Newry lead.
Straight after the kick off Murphy was again called into action when Shane King swung a free kick into the Newry box which Monaghan met at the back post with an out stretched leg which brought another excellent reflex save from Murphy low at his near post.
The rest of the game however belonged to Newry. On 50 minutes, from one of an ever increasing number of free kicks, Carville rose highest at the back post to guide his header towards the top corner of the Camlough net which McDonald did well to tip over the bar.
On the hour mark an exquisite piece of skill from Sean McMullan almost doubled Newrys lead. Receiving the ball outside the box, the big man spotted the Camlough keeper a few paces off his line and clipped a curling shot which hit the junction of post and bar, the rebound falling just out of the reach of Timmy Grant rushing in for the loose ball.
On 65 minutes referee Caldwell was finally forced into taking action when McCabe was shown his second yellow card of the game for a tackle on Mooney. Down to 10 men and the free kick to come Camlough were fortunate when Walkers free kick across the face of the goal was allowed to slip past the far post without the touch it needed to force it over the line.
Having finally got his cards out referee Caldwell was forced into another tough decision when a rare foray into the Newry box by Camlough ended in a scuffle between Monaghan and Curran, the referee seeing enough to show Monaghan a second yellow and Curran a straight red to further reduce the numbers on the field.
The visitors made the most of the added space to wrap the points up in the last 10 minutes. On 82 minutes McMullan got the goal his endeavour deserved when he got onto a cross from Walker, turned Gavin Moan and placed his shot into the bottom corner of the Camlough net to double the Newry advantage. And on 85 minutes Walker was rewarded for his Man of the Match display when he benefited from Keith Johnston’s endeavour, the winger using his pace to retrieve the ball at the corner flag before picking out Walker inside the box, Walker still had plenty to do as he made room for the shot which he thumped past McDonald into the roof of the Camlough net to leave the final score 3-0 to Newry.
Newry City AFC: Murphy, Curran, McMahon, McCaul, Mullan, Carville, Walker, McCann, McMullan, Mooney, Grant. Subs: Crilly, Edgar, Durnin, Johnston.
Camlough Rovers: S McDonald, S King, Magill, G Moan, K Moan, G McCabe, R McDonald, D McCabe, Monaghan, J King, Grant. Subs: Hughes, Loughran, Mooney, O’Hanlon, Kane.
Newry City’s next game is on Saturday 3rd October away to Crumlin Star in the Irish Cup. Newry City supporter’s bus will leave the Stonebridge at 11 AM sharp.