Cork hammer dismal Longford to cruise into FAI Cup semi-finals
John Caulfield’s men made light work of their First Division opposition with easy win
Cork’s Kieran Sadlier celebrates scoring a goal with teammates during their FAI Cup quarter-final win over Longford Town. Photo: Tommy Dickson/Inpho
Longford Town 0 Cork City 7
Kieran Sadlier scored a hat-trick as Cork City’s quest for a third FAI Cup in a row remained on track with a dominant performance to see off hosts Longford Town.
For the second season in a row, John Caulfield’s side had a quarter-final triumph at City Calling Stadium and this was a victory which was comfortable throughout as they built on a 2-0 half-time advantage over 10-man Longford.
From the off before a crowd of 1,181, City were focused on their task, keen to bounce back from the home loss to Sligo Rovers last week which left them six points behind Dundalk.
Karl Sheppard had an early chance as Michael Kelly saved well from him while Sadlier shot over from a tight angle before the deadlock was broken in the 20th minute.
When Sadlier picked out Sheppard on the penalty spot from a corner, the attacker couldn’t capitalise himself but the ball broke kindly for Gearóid Morrissey, who contorted his body to send the ball to the net with an acrobatic kick.
While Longford’s Dylan McGlade had effort wide in the wake of that, City had doubled their lead within minutes. When Ronan Coughlan sent a nice ball wide to Sheppard on the right, he did very well to evade Karl Chambers and crossed for Sadlier to head emphatically past Kelly.
McGlade did go close again for the hosts, his shot deflected wide after Alan Bennett did well to stop Dean Zambra getting to a cross, but the bulk of the chances were continuing to come at the other end.
Sheppard, Morrissey and Garry Buckley all had chances before things got even tougher for Longford six minutes before half-time as midfielder Darren Meenan was sent off when referee Ray Matthews adjudged his challenge on Sadlier to have been reckless, though the home faithful felt it was a harsh call.
Within 10 minutes of the restart, City had added a third goal. When Steven Beattie’s cross wasn’t dealt with by the Longford defence, Ronan Coughlan had an easy task to tap in for his third strike in as many cup games, matching Sadlier’s achievement.
Sadlier then got his second, benefiting from a cross from sub Shane Daly-Bütz with his first touch, and another replacement, Josh O’Hanlon, netted the fifth – also a third in three for him – with Sadlier the provider.
In the 88th minute, Sadlier got his hat-trick with a 30-yard shot and there was still time for a seventh as sub Barry McNamee met O’Hanlon’s assist.
LONGFORD TOWN: Kelly; Elworthy, McDonnell, Noack-Hofmann, Chambers; Dervin, Zambra, Meenan; Hopkins (Tlou 61), Doyle (Dillon 74), McGlade (O’Neill 65).
CORK CITY: Cherrie; Beattie, Bennett (McNamee 57), Barry, Griffin; Morrissey (O’Hanlon 68), Keohane; Sheppard (Daly-Bütz 68), Buckley, Sadlier; Coughlan.
Referee: R Matthews (Westmeath).