PAFC 8-0 Derry Rovers
Aggregate PAFC 9-1 Derry Rovers
Rossleighan Park was the venue for the second leg of Portlaoise’s quarter final tie with Derry Rovers in the Midlands Cup. The first leg had finished one all two weeks ago.
The game took a while to get going with both side struggling to keep possession or test either keeper. Derry Rovers had to replace their keeper on fifteen minutes after an unfortunate collision with Cillian Friel saw him stretchered off with suspected broken ribs.
Portlaoise broke the deadlock with ten minutes to go to half time. A dangerous cross from Cillian Friel caused confusion in the Derry defence with the ball falling to Robbie Farrell who made no mistake from close range. Portlaoise went in one goal ahead without playing anywhere near their potential.
The second half started with Portlaoise on the front foot from the first whistle. They bombarded the Rovers goal, doubling their lead through Byron Mc Guirk with a fantastic strike from outside the box. Cillian Friel added a third and fourth in quick succession with two clinical finishes to the same bottom corner to effectively hand Portlaoise the result with twenty minutes to play.
Derry were then reduced to ten after the ever industrious Oisin Bohan was fouled in the centre circle. Cameron Carlyle came off the bench to make it five with an exquisite chip over the keeper after a lovely move. Brian Brennan got his first of the season and the home teams sixth of the game with a pile driver from twenty five yards, a stunning strike.
Carlyle got his second before Farrell finished the scoring to give Portlaoise a comprehensive victory thanks to a fantastic second half performance.
Portlaoise were well served by Friel, Farrell and Carlyle. On any other occasion Martin Mc Donagh would claim man of the match but Byron McGuirk’s virtuoso performance in the middle of the field wins it for him. A special mention for the defence who were resolute from start to finish keeping a well-deserved clean sheet.
Portlaoise; Jack Pedro, Martin Mc Donagh, Kevin Plesea, Anto Brennan, Roady Dempsey, Oisin Bohan, Robbie Farrell, Byron Mc Guirk, Cillian Friel, Harry Whalley, Charles Agha, Adam Kingston, Cameron Carlyle, Brian Brennan, Lee Moore, David Mulhall.