by Robert O'Reilly
Drogheda United have advanced to the Third Round of the FAI Cup after they defeated Cabinteely 3-1 at United Park.
Second half strikes from Sean Brennan and Adam Whelan sealed Drogheda’s third successive home win after Sean Thornton’s opener had been cancelled out by Jamie McGlynn’s fine strike.
Drogheda manager Johnny McDonnell made two changes from the side that defeated Galway United last week with Dylan Connolly and Sam McGowan starting in place of Micheál Schlingermann and Mick Daly.
The home side were handed the perfect start as they hit the front on 10 minutes when Cabinteely goalkeeper Sean Hyland fumbled Joe Gorman’s simple cross and Thornton pounced for an easy finish.
The 16 year-old was quick to recover though as he made a terrific save from Whelan’s powerful header and then denied Lee Duffy on the follow-up.
It only seemed a matter of time before Drogheda would double their advantage and Duffy will be disappointed not to have tested the goalkeeper when he fired into the side netting after collecting McGowan’s quickly taken free kick.
The First Division side were fortunate not to be reduced to ten men on the half hour mark as former Drogheda defender Victor Ekanem brough Duffy down as he was running clear on goal with the defender only receiving a yellow card.
Cabinteely equalised soon after as Daniel Campbell’s deep cross from the right was brilliantly volleyed by McGlynn into the bottom corner giving Connolly no chance.
The home side struggled to break down a resolute Cabo defense with Duffy having the only clear chance in the opening stages of the second half when he was once again denied by Hyland.
Drogheda’s high pressure eventually paid dividends as Whelan capitalised on Kevin Knight’s square ball deep in his own half before cutting inside McGlynn and firing into the bottom corner of the near post.
Thornton was denied a second late on through United eventually sealed victory at the death as Brennan played Duffy in and his shot rebounded to the Drogheda midfielder to score his first goal of the season.
Drogheda will be looking to maintain their recent strong run of form when they travel to Limerick next Friday for the first game at Markets Field.
Adam Whelan (Tiarnan Mulvenna 77)
Sean Thornton 9’
Adam Whelan 72’
Sean Brennan 90’
Jamie McGlynn 31’