Cork City see off the defending champions

 

It may be premature to say the league title has been won in August but after tonight's 1-0 loss to Cork City it seems unlikely that Shelbourne will retain their FAI Premier League title.

In the early stages it was all Cork and with Shelbourne simply soaking up the pressure it was only a matter of time before the home side made the breakthrough.

It was Neal Horgan who put the Cork ahead on 23 minutes when he buried a pull-back to the edge of the box with the outside of his boot.

Shelbourne were shaken into a response as the chances of defending their league title took a hammering.

Minutes later Glenn Crowe rose above the Cork defence to meet a Wes Holohan cross but he headed just past the far post.

Cork could have doubled their lead on 38 minutes thanks to a fine solo run down the left from Liam Kearney but his shot went over the bar.

It was end to end stuff as the break approached but Cork were the more creative side. Jason Byrne had the best chance to pull one back but he was skillfully dispossessed by Danny Murphy in the Cork penalty area.

Shelbourne came out determined to pull a goal back and embarked on a relentless aerial assault on the Shelbourne goal.

The Cork City defence obliged by giving away a number of frees in dangerous positions and on 56 minutes Jason Byrne's free was unlucky to be deflected off the wall.

Throwing everything forward Shelbourne were always exposed to counter attacks. John O'Flynn created a chance minutes later when he ran on to a speculative long ball but he first touch deserted him, leaving with a tight angle for a shot which he sent past the near post.

As Shelbourne became more frustrated at not making a break through Cork began to come back into it and had a few half-chances of their own and after 73 minutes only a terrific save from Dean Delaney denied a deflected Kearney shot.

Shels were also becoming more indisciplined and it was no surprise when Richie Baker was dismissed with ten minutes to go for a second yellow card after a dreadful tackle on Kearney from behind.