Peamount boss wary of big DLR Waves challenge

by Dave Donnelly

Women’s national league – Peamount United 3 / Cork City 1

BY DAVE DONNELLY

PEAMOUNT United manager James O’Callaghan expects another extremely tough test on Saturday as the champions travel to face this season’s surprise package DLR Waves at the UCD Bowl.

The Newcastle side sit top of the pile with six wins from their six wins to date but already a clear group of four sides have emerged as a breakaway pack.

Peamount, Shelbourne and Wexford have dominated the league for the past few seasons, and they’ve been joined by a new challenger in Graham Kelly’s Waves.

Just five points separate Peamount from fourth-placed Waves, with Wexford and Shelbourne two and three points respectively from the summit.

The Peas won a thrilling encounter by the odd goal in five when the two sides met in Greenogue last season, and O’Callaghan is clear his side will need to be at their best to take three points.

“DLR have had a phenomenal start – they’re playing really well, they’re compact, and they’ve got a really good attacking threat in their team as well,” O’Callaghan tells the Dublin Gazette.

“Graham has gathered a lot of new signings and a lot of experience with some good young players coming through.

“It’s really coming to fruition for him this season, all the work he’s been doing over the past season or two and I fully expect them to do well this year.”

The Peas were forced to dig deep once more against Cork City but top scorer Eleanor Ryan Doyle came up with the goods to keep the champions three points clear.

Peamount, who are going for an unprecedented third successive league title, maintained their 100% record thanks to late goals from Ryan Doyle and captain Aine O’Gorman in Greenogue.

Ryan Doyle notched her second of the game, and sixth for the season total, with a bullet header 20 minutes from time before O’Gorman made the points safe late on.

O’Gorman had been the creator for Ryan Doyle’s early opener but City deservedly levelled just before the break through 16-year-old midfielder Eva Mangan and put it up to Peas.

It’s been a recurring theme for O’Callaghan’s side this season – they were on level terms going into the final quarter of games with Bohemians and Athlone Town before winning late on.

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