Home > 2012, April 2012, Athlone Town 2012, Football, Irish Soccer > Longford Win With Help From Phil

Longford Win With Help From Phil

Friday 27th April 2012. Airtricity League Division 1.
Athlone Town 1-2 Longford Town.

Athlone Town suffered their 3rd home defeat in a row, and 2nd El Classico defeat of the season under controversial circumstances at Athlone Town Stadium on Friday night.

Athlone had to re-jig player positions with left full Ross Kenny ruled out close to kick off time with ligament trouble, while Kevin Williamson was apparently unavailable. This lead to midfielder Mark Walsh making up part of the back four with Jason Hughes recalled to the starting line up.

While both sides were evenly matched, I think anyone present in Lissywollen would agree that Athlone were, as Damien Richardson once so eloquently put it, “Ridden Rock Solid” by a display of officialdom that really broke the boundaries of incompetence.

Longford took an early lead when Mark Walsh lost posession of the ball, and when Gary shaw layed off a pass to Colly James the former Bray Wanderer sent a fantastic shot curling into the top corner of the net.

From then on things for Athlone went from bad to worse. Mark Sherlock had his leg almost amputated inside the penalty area but Phil Cashcera waved play on. Centre half Paul Danaher was then booked … not for a his challenge on former Town player Mark Salmon, but for it being a “2nd team foul”. Just before the break Athlone had their 2nd of 4 penalty claims turned down when Sherlock again was upended on his way through on goal. While from the vantage point of most, including the Longford defenders judging by their facial expressions at the moment of impact, indicated a clear foul … Phil waved play on.

Close to the hour mark Athlone got a deserved equaliser when Noel McGee played a through ball for Mark Sherlock to run on to and delicately chip the advancing Craig Hyland to score his 2nd goal in 2 games.

Alas 5 minutes later Longford restored their lead via Noel Haverty who slotted home from close range. Another 5 minutes and Athlone had a golden opportunity to equalise with Noel McGee fending off former team mate Des Hope, but the striker squandered his chance with a weak effort on goal.

With 10 minutes left on the clock Athlone had their 3rd spot kick claim of the night turned down when Niall Scullion let fly with a powerful shot that was blocked down in the box with some handling that Longford GAA would have welcomed in their game against Wexford the following day … but Phil waved play on

With 3 minutes left Athlone finally looked to be getting the rub of the green with luck when Chris Deans whipped the legs from under Mark Sherlock as he tried to get away a shot on goal. Bizarally, despite getting a shot away, the referee deemed Sherlock to have dived in the box and gave him a booking. As the players were running back and remonstrating with the official, referee assistant Brendan Kelly called Cashera over to remind him he had booked Sherlock earlier in the game and so the red card was waved.

And with that El Classico came to an end, not quite the classic of old but with plenty of talking points!

Click Here For More Photos From Athlone Town v Longford Town

Mark Walsh recieves a boot to the head during Fridays not so classic El Classico

Click Here For More Photos From Athlone Town v Longford Town

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