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Goals Galore In PreSeason El Clasico

February 11, 2015 Leave a comment

10/02/2015. Preseason Friendly. City Calling Stadium
Longford Town 4-3 Athlone Town

Goals galore in the t2015 pre season El Clasico as Longford Town ran out winners on a 4-3 scoreline at City Calling Stadium.

Prematch confusion kicked in as with the game scheduled for a 7.45pm kick off, Longfords posters were not updated for the new time and the fixture was advertised with as a 7.30pm start. To add to it all, kick off was then pushed back to 8pm due to a kit clash.

Goals from Don Cowan (2), Tom Morris and Davy O’Sullivan won the game for Longford while Garbhan Coughlan grabbed a brace and Gareth Brady netted the third for Athlone.

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El Clasico Win Sends Athlone 5 Points Clear

Saturday 10th August 2013. Airtricity League Division 1
Longford Town 0-1 Athlone Town

A 33rd minute strike from Barry Clancy gave Athlone Town victory over rivals Longford Town, sending them 5 points clear at the top of the table with seven games remaining.
As the old cliche goes, it was a game of halves, with Longford leaving the field in disbelief of their failure to convert second half chances into goals.
In the first half, Athlone were quickest out of the blocks and knocked the ball around like a team brimming with confidence. Their confidence almost got an instant boost when Mark Hughes looked to have sent a looping shot into the goal but for an acrobatic save from Chris Bennion.
Athlone were dealt a blow mid-way through the half however when captain Aidan Collins came out the wrong side of a challenge and left the field on a stretcher.
Longford came close to capitalising on a defensive mix up when Robbie Clarke toe poked a clearance just as keeper Paul Skinner advanced to collect, however with Skinner in no man’s land, and Clarke scrambling back, home striker Josh O’Hanlon couldn’t steer his effort on target and so crisis was averted.
With Athlone on top overall, the goal finally came in the 33rd minute when Barry Clancy sent a free kick around the Longford wall and into the bottom corner of the net with Bennion at full stretch.
While Athlone had most possession in the first half, it was a role reversal in the second as Longford got themselves into gear after the break.
Derek O’Brien proved a constant threat down the left wing, however his reliance on his right foot saw him constantly break stride to get the ball on his favored foot, allowing the Athlone defense a vital few seconds to block his advances.
With wave after wave of attack, Paul Skinner proved to be the hero of the hour with a string of fine reaction saves to keep a clean sheet and earn Athlone their eleventh win of the season and their ninth game in succession without defeat.

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El Classic-Oh Yeah!

Friday 14th June 2013. Airtricity League Division 1
Athlone Town 2-0 Longford Town

Two goal from Philly Gorman ensured it was third time lucky for Athlone as they claimed the Midlands bragging rights going into the mid season break at Lissywollen.

Gorman opened the scoring in the tenth minute with a looping shot over the head of the advancing Chris Bennion.
Roddy Collins Jnr came close to doubling the advantage, but after some good work to cut through the Longford defence, his shot flew high and wide.

At the other end, goal scoring sensation Davy O’Sulivan was kept under tight guard, with Aidan Collins giving him little or no room to maneuver whenever the ball came up-field.

On the hour mark, Gorman got his brace from the penalty spot after the ever lively Garbhan Coughlan was taken down.

While Athlone remained on top for the majority of the half, there was some nervousness on account of the 6 minutes injury time added after Mark Salmon took an unfortunate injury. But Athlone held on, and we unlucky not to score another before the full time whistle.

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Philly Gorman celebrates his first goal against Longford

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Athlone fans give their thoughts on the plight of former Longford player Colly James

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El Classico Win Keeps Longford Top

Sat, 20th April 2013. Airtricity League Division 1
Longford Town 2-1 Athlone Town

A Paddywagon, a very vocal crowd, last minute goals and a cracker from Ian Sweeney told the story of the second El Classico of the season, as Longford regained top spot with a 2-1 win over Athlone.

Athlone started with another change in personnel, with Neil Harney relegated to the bench and Robbie Clarke covering centre back for the injured Aidan Collins, while Niall Scullion slotted in at right full. There was also no place for Niall Lanigan after returning from suspension, with Garvan Broughall keeping his place in the middle of the park.

In a scoreless first half, Longford captain Mark Salmon pulled the strings in midfield, making the absence of Keith Gillespie unnoticed as the former Athlone Town man was at the heart of every attacking move the home side put together. Longford had the majority of chances in the first half, however Paul Skinner in the Athlone goal was equal to everything that was thrown at him, while at the other end Ian Sweeney continued to impress as he supplemented the attacking options of Garbhan Coughlan and Philly Gorman.

The second half played out much as the first, with Longford looking more dangerous, but unable to find a way past Skinner. Athlone created chances too, but there was no real end product as Chris Bennion remained largely untroubled.

A draw looked to be on the cards up until the last 6 minutes of play when fortune shone on the hosts as Noel Haverty’s close range effort was deflected into the net from an Athlone player on the back post.

Two minutes later Longford doubled their lead when David O’Sullivan ran on to a through ball, and as the Athlone defence looked to the linesman expecting an offside flag, O’Sullivan rounded the advancing Skinner to fire home.

Athlone didn’t lay down, and in the 90th minute Ian Sweeney fired a goal on the half volley that left both sets of players rooted to the ground. Alas it was too late and the three minutes of injury time failed to product an equaliser as Longford finished Series 1 on top spot.

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Longford match winner David O’Sullivan cuts through Mark Hughes and Robbie Clarke

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Advantage Waterford

Saturday 20th October 2012. Promotion Play Off Semi Final 1st Leg
Longford Town 0-2 Waterford United

A goal inside the opening 30 seconds set Waterford on their way to a 2-0 win away from home in the first leg of the League of Ireland promotion play off semi final.

Before most spectators had even taken their seats, Blues midfielder Peter White headed the visitors into the lead to send the large traveling support into song. Waterford could have doubled their advantage before the break but for a fine save from Craig Hyland in the Longford goal. At the other end, things were a little quieter for Packie Holden due to a combination of Longfords lack of fire power up front and some solid defending from David Breen and John Frost.

Five minutes after the break Waterford headed themselves into a 2-0 lead when Craig Burns, almost unchallenged in the area, directed the ball towards Hylands top right corner as the keeper stood rooted to the ground. It could have been 3 not long after only for an acrobatic save from Hyland to deny Phelan a second goal.

Longfords clearest chance of note came in the last 5 minutes when Mark Sammon unleashed a powerful strike from distance, however Packie Holden pulled off the save of the game to stop the ball flying into the top corner of the net. From the resulting corner, Holden again was out to claim the ball in the crowded box to secure a clean sheet and two goal advantage going into next weeks sencond leg at the RSC

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El Classico Is No Problemo For Town U19’s

September 3, 2012 Leave a comment

Sunday 2nd September 2012. League of Ireland U19 League
Longford Town 0-3 Athlone Town

Athlone Town Under 19’s got their season off to a flyer with a comfortable 3-0 win against local rivals Longford Town in Flancare Park.

For the majority of the opening half hour neither goalkeeper was overly exercised, with Longfords chances restricted to a number of shots from distance, well wide of the target. Athlone played the ball around well, with captain Ian Sweeney in the thick of almost all Athlones attacking action, and they were finally rewarded with the opening goal when Eoin McCormack headed home from close range after a mix up in the Longford defence left the front man unmarked at the back post.

Athlone turned the screw 10 minutes later when Jordan Conroy was quickest to react to tap home from close range to double the advantage. As injury time in the 1st half loomed, Athlone effectively ended the tie when a perfectly weighted pass from Sweeney found the on running Conroy who made no mistake to grab his brace with a well taken goal.

In the second half Athlone seemed to take their foot off the gas and while Longford continued to battle hard, some good defending from Ronan Morris and Michael Monaghan meant the home side rarely troubled in the Town goal.

As the game neared an end, substitute Eddy Oyemiyi almost made it 4 when a clearence from Longford keeper rebounded off head only to zip just wide of the post.

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Ian Sweeney (#7) celebrates with goal scorer Jordan Conroy

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A meaty challenge goes in during the Under 19’s El Classico

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Even Stevens In El Classico Part III

Saturday 7th July 2012. Airtricity League Division 1
Longford Town 0-0 Athlone Town

Despite injuries, suspensions and retirements, Athlone Town travelled to Flancare Park in a battling mood to earn a hard fought scoreless draw with table toppers Longford Town, in the third instalment of the 2012 El Classico series.

Pat Jennings, the saviour in so many matches since his arrival, was called into action inside the opening 10 minutes when he pushed Thomas Crawley’s powerful drive over the bar from close range to keep the game scoreless.

While the home side enjoyed most of the possession, they just had no end product for the majority of the half. Athlone battled hard with Damien Rushe and Kevin Williamson reverting to the roles of full backs due to injuries. Williamson in particular was kept busy for the half with Longford routing most attacks through Gary Shaw, but determination and tough tackling ensured the former Bray striker had little or no clear efforts.

Noel McGee, absent from recent starting line ups, came close to giving Athlone a first half lead but his attempted lob was just wide of Craig Hyland’s left hand post.

The second half played out much as the first with Jennings again pulling off a save that even had the home crowd applauding.
It was a case of “cant score, wont score” for Longford with Alan Kirby, Colly James and Jamie Duffy all spurning glorious chances in front of goal. Duffy in particular was on the receiving end of most of the crowds anger, with plenty of references to his “boy band” career along with suggestions he go back to the family business of the circus.

Athlone had their chances too, with Brian Gill bursting through Longford’s midfield and defence to set up Jordon Conroy but the latest youths team graduate sliced his shot in front of goal. Conroy almost broke the deadlock late on but was unlucky to see his shot beat Hyland, but creep the wrong side of the post.

Deep in injury time Athlone thought they were going to be awarded a penalty as Noel McGee appeared to have his ankle tapped as he powered through on goal, but alas, as with pretty much every game this season, the appeal was waved away.

And so at the third time of asking Athlone Town earned a point in El Classico, and while it wasn’t the classic most fans dream of, it was a resolute and encouraging display from Athlone to keep them in the push for promotion.

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Val Feeney and Damien Rushe double up to stop former Athlone midfielder Mark Salmon

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Longford fans fly their banner against Athlone

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Strictly Come Dancing – Longford Edition

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