DDSL U-18 Topflight Cup: Cabinteely FC DDSL U-18M2 2-0 Wayside Celtic FC
Sunday, May 17, turned out to be a fantastic day for Cabinteely’s talented U-18 squad as they completed the League and Cup double with a win over local rivals Wayside Celtic FC in the final of the DDSL Topflight Cup at the AUL Complex.

The lads were well-prepared for their big day and confident after fourteen wins and two draws out of eighteen league games that saw them top the table with six points to spare over Dundrum FC, who they had also beaten 4-3 (aet) in an epic cup semi. Wayside finished third in the league, but the Cabo lads were in no mood to let anyone stand in the way of their dream finish.

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Coach Derek McDonald (with the help of some generous sponsorship from various parents)  made sure everything was done in style and created a real day to remember for the lads. Throughout the day they were well-presented and impeccably well-behaved. They did themselves, their families and, most of all, the club very proud indeed.

The game’s early stages were a little bit cat and mouse, but after ten minutes Eoin Spencer put Cabo ahead when he latched on to Josh Breen’s clearance, lost three players with a sweet turn and burrowed impossibly between the last two defenders to squeeze the ball just inside the near post from a narrow angle. Trademark Spencer!

Wayside battled hard but produced little to trouble Cabo’s defensive barrier before half time. After the break their opponents came out fighting and Cabo had to absorb some pressure for a spell, but still always looked the more likely to win.

Cup Final Man of the Match – Josh Brereton-Breen
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Cabo were strong in all departments: masterful in midfield, miserly in defence and menacing in attack. Whilst this was no classic, it was a disciplined and dogged performance. Cabo struck a good balance between protecting their lead and looking for that all-important second goal to put the result beyond doubt.

As the game entered the last quarter hour, Wayside redoubled their efforts to find an equaliser and Cabo needed a brave block from James Stuart to save their bacon.

Golden Boot – Eoin Spencer
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Minutes later, Paddy Dunne finally undid the Wayside defence after worrying them all day with his mazy runs, the way a dog worries sheep. In true Dunne style he weaved his way this way and that, making certain not a man was left on his feet before slotting home Cabo’s second and coolly quashing any suggestion of extra time.

Day was done, the match was won. Presentations followed immediately and manager Dermot Berkery collected the commemorative plaque for Cabo. Captain Jonno Farrelly lifted the cup and the celebrations began in earnest.

Players’ Player of the Year – Ciarán Barry
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Back at the Cabo clubhouse, players, families and fans were treated to food and refreshment and even a video re-run of the game before some end of season presentations. The Golden Boot went to Eoin Spencer, while Ciarán Barry was voted Players’ Player of the Year and Jonno Farrelly was the management’s selection for Player of the Year. Josh Brereton-Breen picked up the Cup Final Man of the Match award.

Derek and Dermot, themselves worthy of great credit for making it all happen, paid tribute to the backroom staff and most of all to the squad for all its work and commitment throughout the season and for entertaining us week in, week out with great performances. All agreed that the strongest weapon in this squad’s arsenal is a tremendous team spirit.

Player of the Year – Jonathan Farrelly
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Who knows what next season will bring, but for now it’s time to relax and enjoy a tremendous double success. What better position for this reporter to be signing off from than the summit? Dizzy heights indeed!

Squad: Paddy Dunne, Eoin Spencer, Andy Murdoch, Aaron Walsh, Ollie Noonan, Conor Bourke, Brian Kirwan, Josh Brereton-Breen, Charlie Banks, Louis Cush, Rory Berkery, Jonno Farrelly, Luke Brown, Clovis Byrne, Ciarán Barry, James Stuart and Darragh Porter.

Cup Final Squad
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To see some more photos taken at the match, do enjoy the slideshow below. You may also review the photos on this link if you’re on certain devices.

Congratulations and well done to all – players, coach, manager, parents and scribe!