Valley are the champions


Valley are the champions

It was a momentous day for Valley Rangers FC, who were crowned WW/EC League champions when defeating the league leaders, Brideview in a title decider.

Thursday, 18 April 2013
4:15 AM GMT

Congratulations to Valley Rangers who were crowned champions for the second consecutive season, when defeating league leaders Brideview at a very windy Brideview Park on Sunday afternoon last.

The reigning champions knew nothing but a victory would suffice for them to retain their title and Jason Roche’s first half goal separated the sides at the final whistle.

This coming Saturday we have the final of the Ned Barry Cup, sponsored by O’Neill’s Sports, between Lismore and Pinewood, while we continue with the Liam Fitzgerald in mid-week.


Brideview 0 Valley Rgs 1

When Martin Reddy blew his whistle to signal the end of this game, the final league game of the season, all the emotions of losing league titles in the last games through the years to Brideview, were wiped out as Sean Twomey lifted the Mari Mina Pharmacy Trophy, as the rain began to fall at Brideview Park on Sunday afternoon last. Those days of disappointment for Valley Rgs were well and truly forgotten as the celebrations began.

Brideview came into this game as league leaders by a point from the reigning champions Valley, and the Conna side knew only a win would be good enough for them to become only the second club in the 41 years history of the league to retain the title.

The Brideview pitch was in excellent condition, but a very strong wind turned the game into a tie of two halves. The game kicked off before a very large crowd, and credit here the Brideview club who had the pitch roped off, giving the officials in charge plenty of room and space on the touch lines.

Valley had the advantage in the opening half and attacked straight from the kick off. After a few wides by Valley, it was evident Billy Sheehan’s kick outs were suffering from the strong wind blowing against him and the impetus was with the visitors at this stage. On 15mns, Shane Kearney beat two defenders and crossed for Jason Roche to head back across goal and into the net, giving Sheehan no chance for a goal that would prove be the all important score.

Valley did not seem able to build on this lead and Billy Sheehan was able to deal easily with any shot that came to him. On 28mns, he had to be alert to turn a Sean Twomey header onto the bar and away to safety.

At the other end, Brideview caused very little trouble to the Valley defence as Paul Kearney and Thomas Ryan were tightly marked and not allowed the space they needed to penetrate the visiting defence. With only a goal to show, we felt this may not be enough to curb the Brideview attack with the wind to their backs.

Half-time saw Brideview bring on Paul O’Brien in place of Kieran Fraser and with the wind behind them, they attacked the Valley defence. But the Conna defence held firm, with Twomey and Noel Earley at the heart of the back four in excellent form and Padraig Noonan on the left of the defence playing brilliantly, while on the right hand side, Alan Carr definitely curbed Brideview’s danger man, Thomas Ryan. In front of the back four was the general himself, player manager Shane Kearney and he found time to turn defence into attack against the strong wind.

However Brideview began to attack non stop, with J P Carey heading wide on 59 mns and Paul Kearney heading over from a Kieran Geary cross on 62mns. On 67 minutes Brideview’s best chance arrived when a brilliant pass found the inrushing Ryan on a one-on-one with Sheridan in the Valley goal, but Ryan’s effort went agonisingly the wrong side of the post.

All the time Valley hit the Brideview defence in counter attacks, pushing the home defence back and on 82 mns the visitors had the chance to wrap up the game when Roche’s cross from the left was sidefooted wide by Daniel Mangan with Sheehan beaten. Minutes later Sheridan made a fine save from a Ryan cross, and while Brideview clocked up the corners in the final minutes, two of those flag kicks went wide before reaching the posts, when if they had been kicked to the 18yard line and allowed the wind help them, one never knows what may have happened.

The final whistle arrived and Valley were able to celebrate back to back victories in the Premier, and the only club apart from Brideview to do so.

When one analyses the game, Valley’s management had their homework done. Billy Carr was excellent and stopped the threat of Paul O’Brien, while Alan Carr definitely curbed the danger of Brideview’s speedy winger Thomas Ryan. The back four of Valley played heroically, especially in the second half, and with Shane Kearney fronting the defence in the second half, the home side found it difficult to penetrate the Valley defence. Up front, Roche, Mangan and Farrell were a constant threat, even against the wind as they kept pushing the home defence back.

For Brideview it was a disappointing end to a very good campaign. They can take comfort from the fact that 12 months ago they were in a relegation battle with Mogeely, and they have come back a much stronger side this season. Sheehan in goal, once again proved he is the best in the league and could not be faulted with the goal that was conceded, while the back four, so long the back bone of the team, were put under constant pressure. JP Grey gave his all as usual and when pushed to an attacking role in the final minutes, could not breach the valley defence. The introduction of Paul O’Brien and Brian Henley could not unlock the vice-like grip of the visiting defence and at the end of the 90mns, the better team definitely won.

While this was a pressure game for both teams, we compliment them on a very sporting game played in very difficult windy condition. Not once was there a tackle that would be deemed dangerous and it was a sure sign of the regard each club has for one another, as both teams mingled together for the presentation. The bragging rights on Sunday definitely belong to Valley.


Brideview: B Sheehan, K Geary, A Pratt, JP Grey, S Pratt, E Hickey, K Fraser, P Kearney, T Ryan, M Curley and W Curley. Reserves: P O’Brien for K Fraser, B Henley for S Pratt. Also T McGrath, D McInerney, J Keating and J Walsh.

Valley Rgs: A Sheridan, A Carr, P Noonan, N Earley, S Twomey, S Kearney, B Carr, C Kearney, D Mangan, J Roche and D Farrell.

Reserves: A Carr for J Roche, J Noonan for C Keraney. Also R McCurtain, P Donovan and R O’Neill.

Referee M Reddy, assistants A Kelly and K Griffin. Credit the three officials who did a very professional job in helping to keep the game flowing and enjoyable for the attendance.

After the game, league chairman, Paddy Tobin, complimented both teams on a very sporting game, and congratulated Valley Rgs on retaining the league title. He said it is a great occasion for the Valley club to have their second team win the B Section of the 1st Division. He commiserated with Brideview who put up such a valiant performance throughout the season. Paddy went on to thank Akram Hanna, Mari Mina Pharmacy, for his continued sponsorship of the premier division.

Paddy then presented the Premier Division Trophy to Valley captain Sean Twomey. Sean gave a wonderful acceptance speech in which he spoke of the many occasions Valley departed Tallow after losing the final game in the league, but Sunday made up for all those heart-breaking days. He complimented the Brideview team on their very sporting display, and on behalf of the team he wanted to thank the team manager, Shane Kearney for all the work he has put into the team throughout the season. He concluded by saying Valley’s aim at the start of the season was to retain the league title, a goal that had been achieved.

Colour scheme - Brideview passed, Valley Rgs fail by pair of socks!!

LIAM FITZGERALD CUP (sponsor Alan McNamee)

Caherdrinna 2 Castlebridge 2

Caherdrinna win 7-6 on penalties

This was a Liam Fitzgerald Cup game played in Caherdrinna on Friday evening and after a very exciting game, the home side came out on top in a penalty shoot out after the sides finished level.

Caherdrinna opened the scoring through Gary Lynch, but the visitors were in the lead at half-time. With time running out Jack O’Shea scored an equaliser for the home side and in the penalty shoot out, Caherdrinna came out on top and are now in the draw for the semi-final.


The Ned Barry Cup, sponsored by O’Neills Sports, dominates this weekend’s fixtures, when the holders Lismore face the previous winners, Pinewood at Railway’s Ground on Saturday evening.

In the Liam Fitzgerald Cup, Mogeely play at home to Brideview B this Wednesday evening, while Mogeely play Railway in the league on Saturday afternoon. In the Premier, Youghal play at home to Blackwater.

Pinewood v Lismore

Lismore, holders of the Ned Barry Cup, on Saturday evening play the team that won the cup the previous year, Pinewood. This has the makings of a very good cup final.

As holders, Lismore were made favourites when the draw was made last January. In the league table, Lismore have a point advantage over Pinewood, but with a game more played, and when the sides met in the league, Pinewood won in Lismore, while Lismore reversed the result in Ballymac’.

Both sides play an attacking game. Pinewood are strong in all positions throughout the field and with the very experienced Tom and Mike Guiry managing from the sideline, the Ballymac’side will be a very difficult outfit on Saturday.

Lismore have been hit with injury to many of their players this season, but have a strong back four in Ryan, Alan Landers, Howard and Bennett. At midfield there is an abundance of talent if all players are fit, with Brendan Landers, Jordan Shanahan, Cailean O’Gorman, the evergreen Paul Quinn and the youthful Shane Lynch to the fore in previous games. Eddie Pollard and Kevin O’Donoghue are back from injury and leading the attack will probably be Dan Shanahan. Dan has shown through the league what an asset he is as a target man and this allows space for the midfielders to race into.

Pinewood will have to be at their best in defence to thwart the Lismore attack, but the boys in red have shown this season they are well able to deal with any strike force in the league. Pinewood have already played a cup final this season, when losing to Brideview in the final of the Tony Bolger Cup last October.

Lismore have finished their league campaign, their first back in the premier for a number of years and managers, Colin O’Rourke and Owen Madden are very pleased with their league position, considering they lost so many players from their all conquering side last season when they won promotion just twelve months ago.

The Lismore club presented the Ned Barry Cup to the WWEC a few seasons back to honour a man who had given a lifetime to fostering the game in Lismore and in West Waterford. One can understand the joy last April when Lismore won the cup and their plan last August when the season started was to finish in the top half of the league and retain the Barry Cup. They have achieved the first of their ambitions and now only Pinewood stand in their way.

When Eamonn Cusack blows his whistle for kick off on Saturday evening, we can be assured both teams will be going all out for victory. Tom Guiry will wait patiently for our prediction as he so often tells us we get it wrong with Pinewood!! Not an easy call as the two teams are so evenly matched. Lismore will in all probability wear the favourites tag as the cup holders, while we have a leaning towards the Ballymac’ side over 90mns. But regardless, we believe it has the makings of a cracker of a final from two attack minded teams, and we look forward to another exciting and sporting encounter. Kick off at the Danes Field is 5pm.


As usual there will be a Man of the Match award and this award is sponsored by Paddy Pollard.



Liam Fitzgerald Cup (sponsor Alan McNamee) - Mogeely v Brideview 7pm, K Griffin.


Lismore House Hotel 1st Division - Mogeely v Railway Ath 3pm, S Forde. Ned Barry Cup final at Railway - Lismore v Pinewood 5pm - E Cusack, M Reddy, A Kelly.


Youghal v Blackwater 11.30, J O’Riordan. Lismore House Hotel 1st Div - Inch v Kinsalebeg 11.30, S Drislane.



LEAGUE TABLES W/E 14/04/2013

Mari Mina Pharmacy Premier


Valley Rgs 18 13 3 2 42

Brideview 18 13 1 4 40

Blackwater 17 8 4 6 28

Lismore 18 8 4 6 28

Pinewood 17 8 3 6 27

Youghal Utd 16 8 1 7 25

Inch 18 8 1 9 25

Clashmore 18 6 2 10 20

Cappoquin 18 4 3 11 15

Kilworth 18 0 0 18 0

Lismore House Hotel 1st Division

Mogeely 15 12 1 2 37

Castlebridge 17 11 2 4 35

Glen View 16 6 4 6 22

Accrington 17 6 4 7 21

Railway Ath 15 4 6 5 18


Valley Rgs B 17 8 4 5 28

Brideview B 17 6 4 7 22

Caherdrinna 17 6 2 9 20

Kinsalebeg 15 3 5 7 14

Inch B 15 2 1 12 7

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