County lose at home to Monaghan
County lost out to Monaghan United last night in a dour game at Station Road. Having won away to Wexford last Monday County looked as if they could be in a position to win back to back games for the first time this season.
John Ryan was forced to re shuffle his defence as Glenn Walsh was on holidays. In came David Vickery for his debut and Colin Murray returned to left full with Eoin Kavanagh dropping to the bench.
Monaghan United came into this game full of hope having defeated high flying Shelbourne only four days ago.
Monaghan were first to attack and Brian Gartland showed his intent early on when he broke through the Kildare defence and Austin O Neill had to be alert to prevent him scoring.
Kildare were beginning to look dangerous and a tantalizing cross by Craig Mooney just escaped the inrushing Gregg Kilkenny.
County fell behind after 18 minutes when their “Achilles Heel” – a corner was floated in and once again a player was left unmarked in the box- this time it was Brian Gartland – and he had the simple task of heading in past a stranded Austin O Neill.
County were forced into a further change after 21 minutes when Paul Donnolly limped off to be replaced by Colin Osbourne,
Ciaran Kilduff was unlucky not to bring the sides level when he pounced on slackness in the Monaghan defence and having robbed Paul Whelan shot wide when he should have at least got the shot on target.
Austin O Neill proved his worth early in the second half as he smothered a shot from David Scully and David O Connell played a great ball out of defence to Gregg Kilkenny who skipped by a Longford tackle to set up Kilduff and he looked like equalizing until former County keeper Brendan Kennedy got his hand to Kilduff’s shot and put it out for a corner.
Once again Kennedy was Monaghan’s savior as a corner was cleared to Colin Osbourne on the edge of the box and his well struck shot looked destined for the net until Kennedy intervened and cleared the goal bound shot out for a corner.
County were made pay for those missed chances when Monaghan went further ahead after 66 minutes after Kieran O Reilly cross field ball to Sean Brennan split the County defence and Brennan had the easy task of slotting past O Neill in the county goal.
County threw caution to the wind and substituting Barry Slattery with Ger Robinson County went in search of goals. To be honest although they huffed and puffed the only likelihood of a goal looked to be coming from Colin Fortune via a set piece.
Robinson did get one back as he nipped in front of the Monaghan defence from a well hit Colin Osbourne corner after twenty five minutes of the second half.
County’s two remaining chances were from long distance shots from Colin Fortune and County’s night of misery was completed when Philly Hughes was sent off after the game following a confrontation with former County player David Scully.
Kildare County: O'Neill; Vickery (Brady h/t), O'Connell, Donnelly (Osbourne 21), Murray; Mooney; Slattery (Robinson 67), Fortune, Kilkenny; Hughes, Kilduff.
Monaghan Utd: Kennedy; Whelan, Mooney, McMahon, Clancy; Reilly (Hand 64), Tierney, Brennan, Gartland; Scully, Lanigan (Haran 56).