Collins’ make Shortt work of Kilbarrack

by Dave Donnelly
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COLLINSTOWN took another step forward in their quest for intermediate football as they trounced league leaders Kilbarrack United 3-0 at Greendale Road.
The FAI Junior Cup holders put a three-year plan in place to reach intermediate level when they entered into Sunday Major 1 following their move from the AUL 12 months ago.
And they remain on course to realise that target a year early after cutting the gap between themselves and Kilbarrack to just two points after beating them on their own patch.
Goals from Ger Shortt and Luke Fitzpatrick sent Collinstown in at the break with a two-goal lead before Graham Doyle rounded off a handsome victory in the second half.
Shortt opened the scoring after ten minutes as he pounced on a loose pass back from midfield and nicked the ball over the keeper’s head.
On the half hour, it was 2-0 as a corner from Dean Carpenter – who, along with Darren Clarke, recently returned to the club following a stint with Shamrock Rovers – crossed for Fitzpatrick to head in.
And ten minutes into the second half, Collinstown wrapped up the three points as Shortt turned creator, playing one-twos with Clarke and teeing up the late-arriving Doyle to lash home from the penalty spot.
“If they had beat us they would have been eight points ahead of us, so it was really important to get three points and close that gap,” Collinstown manager Kevin Carroll told Dublin Gazette.
“It was an important game for the club because Kilbarrack have been unbeaten this year and probably, being honest, were favourites to win the division we’re in now with the team they have.
“We played probably the best we’ve played all year against probably the best team we’ve played on Friday night.”
Kilbarrack had been installed as one of the pre-season favourites for the title after they were parachuted in from the AUL straight to the LSL’s top junior division.
And while both sides remain in a strong position to progress to intermediate level, they face stiff competition in a league where any of six sides could make up the three promotion places.
“If we can go up this year then we’ll be playing intermediate football next year, which is the goal.
“When we came into the league we put in a three-year plan to get into intermediate – now it might happen in two years, which would be even better.
“We’ve played really good football the last three games. If we can keep that form the rest of the year, we’ll be hard to catch, but form is only temporary.”
This weekend sees Collinstown travel to Wexford to face Corach United in the last 32 of the Leinster Junior Cup.

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