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Archive for October, 2011

Town Luckless In Limerick

Fri 14th October 2011. Airtricity League Division 1.
Limerick FC 3-1 Athlone Town. Jackman Park.

Athlone finished their travels for the 2011 season with a 3-1 defeat against Limerick at Jackman Park.

For the opening half hour both sides played out an even enough game although Limerick proved to be a far more physical side.

The deadlock was eventually broken when Limerick captain Pat Purcell latched on to a corner to bundle the ball into the net at the back post. Limerick doubled their lead as half time closed in when another corner saw Athlone come undone and the unmarked Jeffery Judge fired home a volley from the edge of the box.

Town grabbed one back close to the hour mark when former St Peters duo Mark Sherlock and Noel McGee combined to catch the Limerick defence flat footed and get Athlone back into the game as McGee tapped in from close range.

Athlone kept the pressure on in search of an equaliser but for the third time a corner, and non existant marking, let Corie Tracey fire home at the back post to wrap up the win and keep Limericks promotion hopes alive.

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Jamie Carr blocks David O'Learys advances

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Play Off Here We Come

Tues 11th October 2011. Euro 2012 Qualifier
Republic of Ireland 2-1 Armenia.

It might not have been the most convincing win but Tuesday nights result in Dublin ensured Irelands place in Thursday afternoons play off draw for Euro 2012. Ireland got an uncharacteristic rub of the green when, in the 26th minute, a suspected hand ball by Simon Cox went unnoticed and as the Ireland striker tried to lift the ball over the advancing Roman Berezovsky, the Armenian keeper blocked the ball with his hands outside the area resulting in a straight red card. Just before the half time break Ireland got their second bout of luck when Kevin Doyles poorly struck shot was met at the back post by Valeri Aleksanyan and the Armenian right full slotted the ball into his own net to send Ireland into the lead.

Ireland doubled their lead on the hour mark when substitute keeper Arsen Petrosyan dropped Aidan McGeadys looping cross directly onto Richard Dunne who made no mistake from close range. While the home fans were still celebrating Armenia managed to set the nerves off again when Yura Movsisyans shot was too powerful for Shay Given to block and the ball went in off Givens hand to make it 2-1.

With 10 minutes left on the clock, Irish fans hearts were in their mouths again when Kevin Doyle saw red after being adjudged to elbow an Armenian defender.
But Ireland held out to win the game, finish 2nd on the group and qualify as a seeded nation in the play offs.

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Simon Cox has his shot blocked by Armenia captain Sargis Hovsepyan

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Athlone Leap Frog Mervue

Saturday 8th October 2011. Airtricity League Division 1.
Athlone Town 4-1 Mervue United. thlone Town Stadium.

Athlone Town jumped ahead of Mervue United to move into 7th place in the table when they inflicted a 4-1 defeat on the Galway outfit on Saturday night.

The win was not only Athlones biggest of the season, it was also the biggest winning margin Town have had since April 2009, 98 competitive games ago, when they beat local rivals Longford Town in the EA Sports Cup. It was also the 1st time Town have scored 4 goals since the infamous 4-4 draw with Monaghan United last season.

Athlone opened the scoring early when Kevin Williamsons cross/shot from the left wing was met by Jason Hughes who made no mistake from close range. Hughes doubled his tally on the half hour mark when he took advantage of a poor back pass from Mark Ludden to lob the ball over the advancing Ger Hanley and into the goal.

In the second half, Town manager Mike Kerley gave a senior debut to under 19 player Niall Boland, and the substitute didnt disappoint as he struck home inside the first 5 minutes of his appearence to make it 3-0 to Athlone.

With 15 minutes left on the clock, striker Mark Sherlock made it 2 goals in 2 games as his hard work paid off when he latched onto Davy Ryans through ball to rubber stamp the victory.

Mervue did manage to pull back a consolotion goal when the hard working John Mountney sent a thunderbolt of a shot past Michael Schlingermann. But it was too little too late as Athlone claimed their
9th win of the season.

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Mark Sherlock scores Athlones third goal

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Town Snatch Draw From The Jaws Of Victory!

Friday 30th September 2011. Airtricity League Division 1
Wexford Youths 3-3 Athlone Town. Ferrycarrig Park.

On a wet and miserable evening in the not so Sunny South East, Athlone Town relinquished the lead not once, not twice but three times to gift Wexford Youths their 1st point on home turf at the 13th time of asking.

Town took an unlikely lead after 13 minutes when Davy Ryans shot rolled right under Packie Holdens hand and trickled into the net.
Town keeper Michael Schlingermann pulled off a series of point blank saves until Darragh Walshe finally pulled the score level with his 1st goal of the season as the half time break approached. Such was the excitment of the goal, Walshe almost ran off the pitch and out of the grounds in celebration … much to the delight of the close on 40 spectators.

Conditions worsened in the 2nd half with players from both sides struggling to stay upright, but credit to the Wexford groundsman as the pitch did not appear to cut up as much as expected.

Just after the hour mark Athlone took the lead again. This time Ryan turned provider when his pass from the left wing caught Holden out of position and Noel McGee made no mistake with the goal wide open. Not 10 minutes later Youths were again level when Schlingermann failed to keep hold of a low cross, and as the ball skidded back off his chest Danny Furlong was on hand to tap in from close range.

With 5 minutes left on the clock, Mark Sherlock looked to have nicked all 3 points for Athlone when he beat the offside trap from a quickly taken free kick and slotted the ball home as the Youths defence stood flat footed waiting for the linesman to flag.

But with the game well into injury time, another lapse in concentration from Athlone let Dean Broaders on to the end of Shane Dempseys free kick to score Wexfords 3rd equaliser and earn the Youths their 1st home point of the 2011 campaign!

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Davy Ryan puts Athlone into the lead as Packie Holden lies on the ground

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Tommy Barrett clears the ball as the torrential rain continues to pour down

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