Kildare U-21's record first ever victory of eircom


KILDARE County Football Club's Under 21 team have recorded their first ever victory in the Eircom U21 League - and they had the unlikeliest hero imaginable to thank.

The Thoroughbreds travelled to College Park, Trinity College, with the squad pared to the quick following the absence of three players, Damien Coogan, Kevin O'Donovan and Michael Daly, due to holidays.

Injuries to first team players Barry Burke and Ray Scully and U21 defender Shaun Tobin left Eddie Moen's side with just eleven fit men and it forced James Dillon to turn from goalkeeper to goalpoacher.

Dillon, who has also played outfield for Suncroft, started up-front for the first time in a Kildare County and responded with a brilliant two-goal salvo.

Kildare's answer to Jorge Campos produced a brilliant volley in the 38th minute to give the visitors the lead when he connected with a Shane D'Arcy knockdown from Mick Hartnett's left wing cross.

Dublin University had their own goalkeeping problems after their number one Paul Collins was injured diving at the feet of D'Arcy and had to be replaced by defender Ronan O'Connor.

The home side started the second half with a bang and drew level two minutes after the restart when Dave Campion scored via the underside of the crossbar after a left-wing free-kick by Dave McEnerney.

But Dillon showed his predatory instincts again to put the Thoroughbreds back in front in the 53rd minute - a dreadful back-pass went straight to the Curragh native and his lob over O'Connor showed remarkable composure for a relative striking novice.

Dillon actually had the ball in the net again in the 75th minute but was denied a stunning hat-trick after being caught clearly offside from a flick-on by Kevin Finn.

Finn was sure he'd set-up number three for Christopher Rogers in the 84th minute with a pin-point through-ball for the younger brother for first teamer Peter Rogers but the young striker was denied by O'Connor.

As Trinity battled for the equaliser, Bryan Byrne showed some real magic to seal the victory by playing a clever one-two with Finn and racing clear the slip the ball home one minute from time.

Kildare County's next U21 game is against Dublin University again, this time in the Enda McGuill Cup at Coill Dubh on Sunday, August 25 (2.00pm).

KILDARE COUNTY - Fred Davis; Cormac Ryan, Mick Hartnett, Eoin Hetherington,

Dave Griffiths, Bryan Byrne, Kevin Finn, Shane D'Arcy, Chris Rogers, James

Dillon, Damien Smyth.

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