Goals from Adam Gillespe and Max Lennon earned the Drogheda League U12’s their first win in the SFAI Subway Championship on Saturday when they overcame a resilient Midlands SL team in Drogheda IFE.

Gillespe had the homeside ahead after just three minutes when he found the back of the net from close-range following a scramble in the box.

DROGHEDA U12s v Midlands 13012018

Prior to that Shane Cully had already had the first attempt on goal for the Midlands, but Finn Moore stood his ground and saved well.

Ryan Carroll had delivered the assist for that effort, and he was in fine form on Saturday, raiding down the right side, and also delivering well from set-pieces.

After the opening goal Eamon Armstrong went close again for Drogheda, and his impact on the tie would be notable as he weaved his way through tackles and picked out some wonderful passes.

Showing plenty of skill, Armstrong had the eventual winners on the front-foot for much of the opening half, but the Midlands stuck to their game plan and were level before the break.

Carroll again swept the ball in from the right, and Colm Duffy guided his low header to the bottom corner.

MIDLANDS U12s v Drogheda 13012018

Maciek Bartusiak was another who performed well for Drogheda, and he was aided by the likes of Adam Cadweir and Sam Heaney who both had first half efforts on goal.

Meanwhile, Joe Keogh and Patrick Moloney stood out for the Midlands, and both combined to tee up Carroll who came within inches of sending the visitors in at the break in the lead.

The second half was only a couple of minutes old when the next goal arrived, and it proved to be the winner.

Sam Heeney cut in from the right before picking out Lennon who had peeled off his marker at the back post. He then caught the ball on the half volley, guiding his shot past the goalkeeper.

Duffy replied instantly with an effort for the Midlands, and Chris Lee maintained the visitors’ attacking prowess, while Andy Murphy grew into the tie for Drogheda, and played an integral role in their win.

The best chance of an eqauliser came from the boot of Alex O’Connor when his free-kick bounced back of the post, and minutes later Ajay Cleary forced Finn Moore to punch ball over his crossbar.

As the clock ticked down the Midlands pressed further to level the tie, but Drogheda stayed resolute, and in the final moments Armstrong made a vital block to deny the visitors a point.

Drogheda Manager, Dylan Moore noted the importance of the win having narrowly lost to Wexford last time out, while Mark Egan was happy with the performance of his Midlands team despite the loss.

Both teams will be back in action on the weekend of February 2nd/3rd, with Drogheda hosting the DDSL and the Midlands traveling to Wexford.

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