Today we enter the most important month for Cobh Ramblers in recent times as we face Derry City in the FAI Cup Quarter Final and have our last 3 league games – where we need 9 points and for Cabinteely to slip up with at least 1 draw.
Top 2 goals of the month, A Sammon direct FK in our 5-2 v Bray and Costelloe’s boomer from 25 yards dead-centre following a short Sammon free kick pass to him.
2nd in manager of the month as Galway had one more league game than us.
A ‘B’ from the board.
Dynamics are pretty good also 🙂
We have had a couple of our youth triallists sign – Anthony Fleming (16yo AMC, 2* CA 4/5* PA, 5ft 9in) and Matt McCann (16yo DC, 1.5* CA, 3/4* PA, 6ft). Anthony Fleming seems to be in the Mike Hourihane Mould.
I’ve also signed another 1-year contract – will go up to £360/wk if we can get promotion 🙂 🙂 🙂
More of the youth triallists signing – David McMahon (16yo MC, 2* CA, 3/4* PA, 5ft 9in), John O’Brien (16yo AMR, 2* CA 3.5/4.5 PA, 5ft 11), Peter Higgins (16yo DR, 1* CA, 4/5* PA, 5ft 9) and Mark O’Keefe (3* YCA, 3/4* PA, 6ft 2).
3rd October 2021 – Derry City (H) – FAI Cup Semi Final
We welcome Derry City to St Colman’s Park knowing we are potential 180 minutes away from Europe next season. derry are currently 6th in the Premier Division and have been in decent form, but have lost their last 2 games in the league. We have lost 1 of our last 15 matches. It’s going to be a match for the ages 🙂 🙂 🙂
Derry are 5/4 on with the bookies, we’re 3/1 and Derry are without 4 senior players though injury or suspension.
The boys know what to do – Going with Phillips back at DL and Hurley into BWM as a better option as Kane Lewis has made a ton of mistakes in recent games. Looking for some of that Sammon & Porter magic up top 🙂 Derry go with a 4-4-2. Lets give this a bloody good go!!!
FT Cobh Ramblers 4 (Porter 9, Devine 15, Sammon 48, Evans 90) Derry City 0 Att 915 (132 Away)
It’s absolutely pouring down today on the south coast, and we nearly scored in the first minute, an O’Riordan header hitting the post before being scrambled away. Just before then the Derry main man, Darren McCauley, got himself booked in the first 30 seconds – he’s walking the tightrope for the rest of the game – might focus hard tackling on him I think. Mcgarvey then missed a sitter for Derry in the 4th minute… An Sammon a one-on-one in the 8th… Don’t think this will finish 0-0 somehow. How right was I, 9th minute, and its 1-0 Cobh!!!!!! beautiful play by Evans slips in Porter, who finished well for his 3rd goal of the season. And fuck me, we’ve only gone 2-0 up!!! more amazing passing through the defence, this time from Porter, sets up Ethan Devine, who taps home his 6th of the season. This is mental!! And even crazier, Mylod almost hands Derry their first goal with a stupid role-out to O’Riordan but O’Hanlon missed with the goal at his mercy. Mad. 20th minute, should have been 3-0, Costelloe putting Sammon through but his shot was brilliantly saved. It’s a proper end-to-end cup tie, McCauley having a shot well saved by Mylod. Bugger – Charlie Fleming has a calf strain caused by a bad MaCauley challenge, 40 gone. Meade coming on. Can we hold on to half time under increasing pressure? Yes we do! 2-0 Cobh at Half Time!!!
And how’s about this for a start to a half. 3-0 Cobh!!!!!, Evans slipping a cross in to Sammon, completely unmarked, looking a long way off (Until I saw the leftback who was defending the initial throw in had lagged well back) who headed home across the Derry keeper. This is absolutely nuts 🙂 God knows what the centre-backs were doing there. Nearly 4 a few minutes later, a quick counter and we tripped over ourselves a bit. We’re still cutting them apart at will though. 65 gone, Costelloe’s on a booking so Mihoubi’s coming on for the last 25. Derry finally get on the scoresheet in the 73rd minute, McGarvey with the finish – unfortunately there were at least 5 Derry players offside 🙂 🙂 🙂 75 gone. O’Riordan has run himself ragged – Douglas on, Meade goes to centre back. 79 gone, a sumptuous ball over from Douglas finds Sammon, who’s volley clips the crossbar. We’ve torn them a new one today. Even into the last 5 (On Balanced, Timewasting) we are still pushing and pushing and pushing. And 10 seconds before the 90 is up David Evans gets on the scoresheet – more sublime passing, and a Ethan devine cross-field ball find Evans in acres, and he slammed the ball home from 15 yards across the Derry Keeper. 4-0 Cobh!!! And we’re going for number 5 🙂 🙂 FT 4-0, the best performance I’ve seen from any team I’ve ever managed in Football Manager. Period. We’re in the final boys!!!!
Almost £32k in prize money for that one 🙂 Now under £30k in the Red. And we will play…
The biggest club in Ireland Dundalk, who we have previous with. I doubt they’ll put their second string out for that one :). The final is on 31st October at the Aviva in Dublin 🙂 This also means we play our final league game just 3 days before the final, and in many ways that will be more important…
I also checked monies etc. – Even if we lose we will get £42k, which should put us in the black, £63k the win and qualification for the Europa Conference League – This season that was St. Pats (Cork won the cup but came 3rd, St Pat’s 4th), who went out in the Best Placed 2nd Qualifying round to Jeunesse Esch of Luxembourg on Penalties, securing £73k in appearance money, the sort of money that keeps us afloat for a season… Shamrock Rovers went out in the Best Placed 3rd Qualifying Round to FC Sion of Switzerland. Dundalk went out in the Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round to Basel (A really tough draw) – the competition rules don’t state if there is any prize money, but they beat Trepca 89 of Kosovo 8-0 on aggregate in the 1st Qualifying Round. They then went into the Europa League Champions 3rd Qualifying Round, losing 4-2 on aggregate to Slovan Bratislava, before going to the Europa Conference League Champions 4th Qualyifying Round. Here they beat Odd of Norway 2-1 on aggregate, qualifying for the Europa Conference league Group Stage (Group C). They are in a group with AA Gent, HJK Helsinki and Qarabag of Azerbaijan and are currently 3rd with 3 points after 3 games (A 3-0 win away in Azerbaijan the stand-out).
Charlie Fleming – Calf Strain, out for 5 to 7 Weeks.
Bugger, that’s his season done.
We have Finn Harps in 5 days at home, so we need to keep the boys enthusiasm in check – 3 league games, 3 wins and we <<might>> get a shot at the playoffs. And the form we’re in would make us favourites IMO.
Before then another contract extension – Mark Burke (19yo GK, 2* CA, 3/5/4.5* PA, 6ft) signs for another year. Charlie Lyons signs as well, 21yo CD, 2*CA, 3.5/4.5* PA, 6ft 2, as does Kane Lewis (23yo DR, 3* CA, 3.5* PA, 6ft).
We also have some staff contract renewals, Mark Conway (Coach), John Henderson (Coach), Kevin Jenkins (AM & GK Coach), Adrian Harper (U19’s Manager), Luke Lewis (Scout) and James Slater (Coach).
Unfortunately our U19’s have lost in the U19 National League Playoff QF, 5-4 on Pens after a 2-2 AET draw v Dundalk U19’s. Goalscorers were 18yo DC Axel Bernet and 17yo STC James Hobbs. Bernet also missed a penalty in the 104th minute. A real shame, but really good experience.
8th October 2021 – Finn Harps (H) – First Division
And so we get to Friday 8th, on a massive high after the Derry City thumping, knowing nothing but a win will do. Cabinteely are playing Bray though, so I’ll be looking to them for a helping hand. The Harps have been very up and down. Since a win v Galway at the start of May they’ve only beaten Longford, Athlone & Wexford (9th, 8th & 10th) in the League and a non-league team in the first round of the FAI Cup, before we put them out 4-0.
So with Charlie Fleming out injured and Dara Costelloe banned for Yellows we have Kane Lewis and Lyamine Mihoubi stepping into the breach – both more than capable of bringing a lot to the team. Looking for that win to keep us in the hunt. the Harps go with an attacking 4-4-2 but are without their top score Mikey Place through injury.
FT Cobh Ramblers 4 (Devine 8, Mihoubi 25, Sammon 61, Evans 78) Finn Harps 0 Att 405 (54 Away)
Friday night in Cobh, and the Harps start out well, their loanee winger Sinclair Armstrong looking very dangerous. 8th minute, Sammon hits the woodwork… Another game that could be a 4-4 judging by the first 8 minutes. And it is 1-0 in the 8th minute – a corner headed away by the Harps, swung back in by Evans after a short pass from O’Riordan, Porter’s header blocked straight to Devine, who fires home a volley from the penalty spot. in the playoffs on goal difference at the moment. Mihoubi is making good inroads down the left today. And he makes it 2-0 in the 25th minute, a lovely early ball from Keeper Mylod after claiming a corner finds Evans our wide on the right, who gallops 30 yards towards the corner of the box, crosses to the back post to find Mihoubi, who taps in just inside the post. 2-0 Cobh, our goalscoring run continues. The game quietens down after the 2nd goal, and we take the lead into half-time.
A quiet start to the half – news comes in of a Cabinteely equaliser v Bray, though we are still 4th on GD currently. And it took until the 61st minute for another goal. I was thinking of taking Sammon off as he was having a quiet game and had missed a few, and then he goes and fires in a 25 yard stunner after a short pass by Mihoubi… 3-0 Cobh. Sammon should have had his second a few minutes later – a Lewis cross volleyed straight at the Keeper. Then a big blow, Ethan Devine picking up a potential Knee Injury… Please don’t let injuries fuck our season over!!! Kevin Taylor on, Pierce Phillips in for Devine in Centre Mid. 75 gone, Doherty on for Sammon. And it was 4 in the 78th minute, another lovely break from a Harps corner, Kevin Taylor in the end whipping a lovely cross right over to David Evans, who was in acres; he stormed in and slammed it past Menton in the Harps net. Stunningly effective Counter Attacking play. Last sub, Meade in for O’Riordan for the last 10. And that’s how it finished – another 4-0 win. This is the best stretch of form I’ve had from a team in FM I think, just slamming all-comers.
Right where we want to be – 2 games left and its in our hands again as Cabinteely drop points versus Bray, who still have to get 2 points to secure 3rd. Galway & Limerick secure play-off spots. Now, lets cross our fingers for Ethan Devine…
Ethan Devine – Bruised Knee – 1-2 Days. Phew!!!
We now have 2 weeks before our crunch game away in Galway.
The day after the 4-0 our U19’s beat Tullamore in a friendly 7-0 – goals from 19yo AMC Shane O’Flynn, Dara Costelloe (Who is ineligible for the Galway game as well as he can’t play against his parent club), James McSweeney and 4 from Daire Doherty 🙂
Just the 4 players in the team of the week, Kane, Pierce, Lyamine & Eoin.
Our U19’s played again, this time winning 6-0 v Newmarket Celtic, goals from Shane O’Flynn, 19yo AMR Paul Caulfield, Evan Murphy, Dara Costelloe, Dean Ebbe and Eoin McCormack.
22nd October 2021 – Galway Utd (A) – 1st Division
We rock up to the Eamonn Deacy Park in Galway tonight 7/2 outsiders to win versus top-of-the-table Galway. They have won every league game since 16th July, and have only lost to Dundalk since then in the FAI Cup, and then only in a replay. We’ve only lost the 1 game in 17 competitive matches now, going back to 7th May, and we’ve been scoring for fun; the last time we scored less than 2 goals was 9 games ago in a 1-1 draw – the last time we didn’t score was 17 games ago, Galway 11. It’s going to be mental.
Cabinteely are away to Wexford (bottom) in what should be an easy win. Can we pull off a famous one and maybe change the course of the title? Nervous about this one.
Unchanged from the Derry game, except Pass into Space is now on, and I’ve turned off Run at Defence as we were losing the ball a fair amount. Costelloe can’t play against his parent club so Mihoubi, who had a fine game last time out keeps his place. Galway go into this with a 4-4-1-1, danger-man Conor Barry at No. 10, away from his usual right wing. The biggest game of the season coming up, lets go.
FT Galway Utd 3 (Wright 9, 45+1, Christopher 88) Cobh Ramblers 3 (Evans 15, Sammon 23, O’Riordan 47) Att 822 (28 Away)
We’re in the Sky Blue tonight versus the Claret of Galway Utd. 7 minutes in and david Evans gets a bruised thigh – not showing any change in condition so he stays on. Unfortunately we go 1 down in the 9th minute, a Hughes clearance taken by Christopher, who evades Phillips, slipping a pass to Wright who scores past a flailing Mylod. Early doors, hopefully too early for them. And it might be, as we equalise just 6 minutes later. Evans picked up the ball just inside the Galway half, and proceeds to run through the centre unchallenged, before scoring well left-footed from 15 yards or so for his 11th of the season. 1-1, game on 🙂 We are breaking quickly on them, and they are struggling to keep us out in those instances. And we’ve only taken the lead boys!!! 23rd minute, Porter receives a throw-in from Lewis on the right, completely unmarked, slips a ball into Sammon, also in acres, who strolls through and taps in across the Keeper with the greatest of ease. A very odd goal defensively, they look at 6’s and 7’s. 2-1 Cobh. When Galway do get forward they always look dangerous though – they wouldn’t be top if they weren’t. And in injury time its 2-2 – Wright breaking the offside trap to fire past Mylod. 2-2. Don’t think it will finish like this. We go at half-time 2-2, a brilliant reply to an early goal but a defensive mistake stepping up see us go in equal.
Don’t know which way this is going to go. We really need to win as Cabinteely are 2-0 up at Wexford. It should have been 3-2 in the 47th, Sammon 1-on-1, saved brilliantly by Horgan. Just need that bit of luck. Or do we, no luck needed!! 3-2 Cobh in the 47th, An Evans corner headed in thunderously off the bar by O’Riordan at the near post 🙂 Looking like a game of the season contender. 60 minutes, first change is Devine, coming off for Taylor (He’s on a 6.2 so must be doen as a mistake for one of the goals). 69th minute, another Sammon 1-on-1 missed after an amazing through-ball by Phillips. But we so very nearly give it away, Evans being harried makes a hospital pass to O’Riordan, Wright gets away but somehow misses the target – that bit of luck maybe??? Going back to Balanced, getting the Heeby-Jeebies. 78th Minute – Daire Doherty on for the last 15, Sammon coming off. Fresh Legs. But maybe the nail in the coffin for our season. 88th Minute, Christopher scores a direct free kick. Fuck. Off. Game. Unbelievable, 2 really good chances in injury time, both somehow kept out. And it finishes 3-3. We need Cabinteely to not win in their last match (Finn Harps at Home), and we need to beat Athlone Town.
We may have changed the fate of the title as Limerick now have their fate in their own hands going into the final day. Bray have secured a playoff spot beating Longford 3-0 and the only bright spot for us is Rob Manley getting sent off for Cabinteely in their 2-0 win at Wexford – One of Cabinteely’s key players.
So we have 6 days until Athlone, then just 3 until the Cup Final v Dundalk.
Our U19’s lost 1-0 to Everton (Cork)
28th October 2021 – Athlone Town (H) – 1st Division
I wasn’t aware it was Limerick v Galway for the title – That’s hell of a game, and I reckon galway will shade it, if we’ve not hurt their morale with our 3-3 draw. There will be a bit of update watching tonight.
Athlone have lost their last 4 games, letting in 7 in their last 2 games. Expect a difficult nervy game.
Costellow back in after a couple of games off, banned and ineligible. The boys are storming it at the moment, just want them to kill this off early and put the pressure on Cabinteely. Athlone go with a 4-1-2-3 Wide, the mirror of our formation, so man-for-man. Strangely they are not playing Andrew Moore, their best player by far (Not even in the squad….)
FT Cobh Ramblers 5 (Porter 8, Sammon 20, 23, Hughes 57, Costelloe 67) Athlone Town 2 (McIlhatton pen 25, George 69) Att 393 (4 Away)
Today I will be listing out the happenings across the league (Well, the Galway/Limerick and Cabinteely/Finn Harps games anyway). Fingers Crossed!!!
- 3 Minutes – Limerick take the lead at home to Galway – Molloy the scorer.
- 8 Minutes – GOAL COBH – Porter heads home from a Kane Lewis cross from the byline to put Cobh into the lead. 1-0.
- 9 Minutes – Galway equalise versus Limerick, Morrissey the scorer.
- 20 Minutes – GOAL COBH – Ping-Pong in the Athlone box, the ball falls to Sammon, who scores his 15th of the (Half) Season, Costelloe credited with the assist. 2-0 Cobh.
- 23 Minutes – GOAL COBH – Athlone caught asleep, quick work by Lewis, and a lovely pass releasing Porter, who gets to the byline and pulls back inside to Sammon, who scores his 2nd in 3 minutes. 3-0 Cobh. Hopefully Cabinteely are getting updates 🙂
- 25 Minutes – GOAL ATHLONE – Lewis alleged to have tripped Alamu, McIlhatton steps up and scores the penalty. 3-1 Cobh
- 31 Minutes – GOAL FINN HARPS!!!!! – The Harps go 1-0 up at Cabinteely, Grimes the scorer. St Colman’s Park goes mad.
And that’s half time. Cabinteely need 2 goals, Galway 1 to overturn Limerick. All to play for. It’s the hope that kills you though…. I’ll also have the final in mind, maybe some early subbage, we shall see.
- 48 Minutes – GOAL CABINTEELY 🙁 – Tierney pulls them level v Finn Harps. Squeaky Bum time.
- 50 Minutes – Galway go into the lead versus Limerick and back into 1st – Morrissey with his 2nd of the game.
- 57 Minutes – GOAL COBH – Adam Hughes pops up in the box as a corner evades everyone – a tap in from 3 yards (Keeper should have come for that one, no way that should be bouncing). 4-1 Cobh. OK, Evans & Hughes are both 1 yellow away from suspension – they’re coming off to a standing ovation, Meade & Mihoubi on in their place.
- 65 Minutes – We’ve now hit the woodwork for the 4th time today….
- 67 Minutes – GOAL COBH – Costelloe makes it 5-1 with a scorcher from just inside the left corner of the box. Stunning forward play.
- 70 Minutes – GOAL ATHLONE – Its an end of season party, George scoring a volley after a looped ball over by McIlhatton. Devine coming off for Taylor (He’s on a booking)
- 85 Minutes – Cabinteely still searching for that elusive goal – you just know they’re going to get it, don’t you. Feeling so nervous over what is effectively a glorified spreadsheet….
- Injury Time….
- Full Time at Cobh, we win 5-2. dreading that next click…
WE QUALIFY FOR THE PLAYOFFS 🙂 🙂 🙂
Galway secure the league title and go straight back up into the Premier Division with their 2-1 win at Limerick. With Cabinteely only able to draw with Finn Harps that puts Limerick, Bray and us into the playoffs, with Bohemians, who we’ve already beaten once this season). There was also a crazy game in Dublin as Bray beat UCD 6-4. We pick up £12k for finishing 4th.
But now we have a big problem. The cup final is on Sunday (31st October) and the playoff semi final legs versus Bray Wanderers are on Tuesday 2nd November (At Home) and Friday 5th…. 3 games in 123 hours, the first 2 in 51 hours….
Just got a little update from the board, wishing us luck in the final.
Does this mean he’s retiring as we only play part-time football?? We shall see.
That will be a yes. Hopefully Keano will get on board 🙂 🙂 🙂
Ok – My Ass. Man. wants full rotation for the Final 🙂 I’m so torn – I know I might have to rotate a fair bit for the playoff 1st leg, but that’s at home, so I’d really like to win that one…
On the other hand this is our first FAI Cup Final as a club, so I want to give a good account of ourselves.
And a local investor is interested in becoming the next Chairman…
31st October 2021 – Dundalk (At The Aviva, Dublin) – FAI Cup Final
We make the trip to Dublin to play at Lansdowne Road for the first time today, looking for a famous (If what would one of the all-time shocks in Irish Football) versus a Dundalk side looking for the Quadruple. We’ve got no chance, have we, Dundalk are 4/1 on, us 9/1 against with the bookies?….
Dundalk also still have games left, 3 Europa Conference League Group games left (Next game Thursday 4th November), and an Irish Champions Cup Final v the winners of the Danske Bank Premiership in Northern Ireland last season – Linfield. They also have 2 injuries and 2 suspensions from their usual first 11. gain, its the hope that kills you….
No change, this is our best team, we go Positive. Dundalk go with the identical formation – looking at the shirt numbers this may be a rotated team…
Cheeky Fuckers!! Lets go smash them!!!!
FT Cobh Ramblers 1 (Evans 28) Dundalk 3 (Hanratty 7, Moore 48, Hoare 51) Att 8,226 (712 Cobh)
Still can’t believe they’d do an almost full rotation against us – We beat them 2-1 in the 1st round last season when they tried that!!! The boys walk out into the cavernous Aviva Stadium, and it looks empty (7,700 expected today). Dundalk take the lead in the 7th minute, Hanratty ghosting past Hughes, firing across Mylod. 1-0 Dundalk. It was very quiet after the goal (Moved to Extended highlights from Comprehensive as the games were taking 20 minutes or so to play through in some instances) until the 28th minute, when we only went and equalised!!! Nice play from Lewis on the edge of the area, slipping in Evans who tapped home for his 12th goal of the season. Game on!! 1-1. It’s definitely a war of attrition – very quiet, even on Extended highlights. And we go in all level at half time. It’s Extra Time and Penalties today – please God no, that’s the playoffs gone I think If that happens. Making 1 change, Meade for O’Riordan, thinking about the playoff 1st leg.
Bugger, 2-1 Dundalk in the 48th minute, a Mountney long-range free kick hits the post, Moore best placed to tap home past Mylod. And it’s 3-1 in the 51st, another free kick, headed home by Hoare (Unmarked). Right, subs, Porter off for Hourihane, Costelloe for Mihoubi. We had a few chances after the 3rd goal, but that’s the difference between the teams today – clarity in front of goal. Lowering the tempo, stay on feet etc. to try and eke a few % condition in this last 30. And it finished 3-1 Dundalk, a good showing, undone by set pieces in the end.
£42k in, £4k out in bonuses, and for the second time in the save (A short period in late 2019 when we were £10k in the black) I’m in the black financially.
A nice share of the gate receipts as well helps massively.
And that ends October 2021. An absolutely mental month. Next up is November – Possibly just the 2 games if we don’t get past Bray Wanderers first up, maybe as many as 5 (The Final v Bohemians is a single game) but whatever happens these last couple of months in game have been the most enjoyable of the save for me, maybe the most enjoyable out of any save.
Last up are the key highlights from the month – sit back and get some popcorn 🙂 See you soon.