Year End Awards

Filed under: General news, Over 35 team, Saturday LSL team, Sunday LSL team by: Paul McGowan

Saturday 13th May will see the presentation of the year end awards in the Eden.

Fintan Grace will receive an award for completing 600 competitive appearances.

Nominations have now closed, and the following are the players who are in contention:

Sunday POTY

A wide range of votes saw a record number of nominees:
Dave Kernan, Niall Lennon, Jeff Gamble, Ger Byrne, Steve Grier, Neil McGowan and Stuart Love

For Saturday, the voting was more concentrated and the following are the contenders:
Greg Byrne, Darren Ritchie, Cian Stenson and Mick Leslie.

For Clubman of the Year the nominations are
Mick Leslie, Mick Greene, Paul McGowan, Paul Mohan, Ger Byrne and Jason Doyle.

Spartak edge it

Filed under: General news, Sunday LSL team by: Paul McGowan

26/3/17
Spartak 1, Sallynogin Pearse 0

A free kick scored by Steve Walsh just four minutes from the end clinched a narrow win over a visiting side who created more chances over the course of the game.

Given the circumstances, with injury and suspension restricting the Sky Blues, it was a decent win; all the more so when Steve Grier had to take the keepers jersey. Indeed when Niall Lennon pulled up with a muscle strain with 15 minutes left, he swapped places with Steve; Mick Leslie, as substitute, was carrying a knock and unable to play.

Spartak began shakily and the green clad visitors took the initiative. A couple of runs down Spartak’s right flank saw a header just over and the Sky Blues were later grateful to Niall Lennon for a superb headed clearance when a goal looked certain.

A half clearance by Paul Kinsella saw SallynogginPearse slam a shot against the post in what was probably the best chance up to then, and then the opponents made a mess of a good opportunity when Dave Browne conceded possession on the edge of the penalty area.

Spartak did manage to get in a few crosses, but only one chance, when Jeff Gamble’s heavy touch allowed the ball to run away from him.

Sallynoggin threatened again when Steve Grier advanced to save and Paul Kinsella’s attempted clearance gave the forward the chance to lob the stranded Grier, but luckily the lob cleared the crossbar.

A neat move by Dave Browne, Dave Kernan and Jeff Gamble saw Kernan’s cross from an overlapping run cleared by an alert defender. Then Neil McGowan headed over from Dave Browne’s cross, while Ger Byrne had a goalbound shot blocked from close range.

A late surge saw the visitors concede a free kick on the edge of the “D”. Up stepped Steve Walsh, anonymous until then, to fire a dipping effort over the wall and into the corner.

Form Report
Steve Grier 7 Dave Browne 6 Cian Donohoe 6 Paul Kinsella 6 Darragh Logue 7 Jeff Gamble 6 Neil McGowan 6 Dave Kernan 6 Niall Lennon 7 Ger Byrne 6 Steve Walsh 6
Sub: Mick Leslie

A Welcome Three Points

Filed under: General news, Sunday LSL team by: Paul McGowan

12.3.17
Spartak 4, Palmerstown 1

Spartak completed the double over Palmerstown on a typically bobbly March pitch in Marlay park.

Jeff Gamble, returning after a extended injury-enforced absence, lost no time in getting back on the scoresheet, receiving Steve Walsh’s pass and cutting inside at pace before unleashing a fierce shot pat the visiting custodian.

Spartak doubled their lead when Gamble’s attempt was cleared at the expense of a corner; Steve Grier powerfully headed Walsh’s flag kick home.

Stuart Love had to go off nursing damaged ribs at the interval, with his replacement Cian Donohoe wasting no time in making his usual impression on the match!

Spartak then dropped the tempo somewhat, but still continued to create chances; Ger Byrne fired one wide and then shot over with his next effort. Owen Marron fired wide before getting his name on the scoresheet for number three.

Palmerstown got more into the game and a defensive slip up saw them fire in a goal from the edge of the box.

The game was now more open as the visitors saw that a second goal would make for a competitive end to the match. At the other end Steve Walsh had a effort wide after a Steve Grier pass; Mick Leslie had time and space but fired wide of the far post.

The result was put beyond doubt when Walsh slotted home Marron’s pass from angle on the right.

A satisfactory victory.

Form Report
Daniel Galvin 6 David Kernan 7 Steve Walsh 7 Ian Harmon 8 Paul Kinsella 6 Stuart Love 6 Owen Marron 7 Jeff Gamble 7 Steve Grier 6 Ger Byrne 6 Niall Lennon 6
Subs: Cian Donohoe 6 Mick Leslie 6

Frustrating Defeat

Filed under: General news, Saturday LSL team by: Paul McGowan

18.2.17
Newlands/Castle Park 3, Spartak 1

Both sides suffered at the hands of the worst referee in the League. Newlands had a player booked for heading the ball; Spartak had a bad foul and an offside ignored in the move for the home sides second goal.

Newlands took the lead on 8 minutes when a corner was cleared back to the taker, who was given too much time to measure his cross to the back post, where poor marking proved costly. Spartak soon equalised, with Gary Bridges finding Mick Leslie on the right; Shane McInerney’s guided header fond the corner of the net.

Before the disputed second goal, Spartak had a golden opportunity to take the lead, when, after a fine move , Owen McCormack cut inside to find himself twelve yards out, but, opting for power, he blasted the ball against a post.

The Sky Blues renewed their efforts in the second period, with a great chance falling to Geoff Abraham following Sean Molloy’s cross; Geoff’s effort, from five yards, was too close to the keeper.

Owen McCormack wormed his way through and looked certain to score, but the keeper saved with his leg; consistent with other decisions, the ref awarded a goal kick rather than a corner. Then, Owen McCormack just failed to connect with Cian Stenson’s corner.

Newlands broke well for a third goal, with a header from a cross, and Conor Canavan made a good save from a one on one as Spartak threw men forward.

Form Report
Conor Canavan 7 Chris Hogan 5 Cian Stenson 7 Gary Bridges 6 Dave O’Kelly 6 Shane McInerney 7 Sean Molloy 6 Geoff Abraham 6 Darren Ritchie 6 Mick Leslie 6 Owen McCormack 6
Subs: Leo Bradley 5 Conor Callis 5 Conor Brady 5 Rob Collins 5

Spartak Slump

Filed under: General news, Sunday LSL team by: Paul McGowan

19.2.17
Spartak 0, Valeview Shankill 5

Spartak, without several regulars, faced the form team of LSL Premier in the Polikoff Cup, and failed to match the pace and tenacity of the winners.

Two unnecessary penalties conceded along with a dismissal early in the second half contrived to place Spartak in an impossible position. The dismissal, which was harsh, came after just a few second half minutes.

Valeview had most of the first half play, and hardly need the boost of a sloppy 3rd minute penalty conceded. They generally dominated play for the first quarter and could have been more than one ahead. Gradually, Spartak got a foothold in the game with good runs by Dave Kernan getting the Sky Blues up the pitch. One fine cross from Dave drifted across the goalmouth without a Spartak player to apply the finishing touch. Steve Grier fired against the outside of the post, and Ger Byrne’s shot on the turn was fumbled by the keeper.

On 48 minutes, a red card reduced Spartak to ten men , and the visitors added a fine second from distance. Spartak had a couple of half chance, but the game drifted out of reach when a second penalty was conceded.

The game was played out with the visitors adding a fourth with the aid of a deflection, and capped the victory with a fifth.

Form Report
Peter O’Toole 7 Ian Harmon 7 Cian Donohoe 5 Steve Grier 7 Darragh Logue 7 Stuart Love 5 Neil McGowan 4 Dave Kernan 7 Niall Lennon 5 Ger Byrne 5 Steve Walsh 5
Subs: Paul Kinsella 5 Sean Molloy 6 Mick Leslie 5

Bray Woes

Filed under: General news, Sunday LSL team by: Paul McGowan

12.2.17
Bray 3, Spartak 2

A decent game in sticky conditions in Bray saw Spartak finish with nine men. The referee controlled the game in general, but erred on some major decisions .

Bray were awarded a penalty when the centre forward slipped in the mud.

A free kick was awarded against stand in keeper Karl McCullagh for heading the ball outside the box. In this case, the ref clearly thought it was a handball, with a possible sanction. The free was eventually taken but no card shown, as he must have realised the error. In the confusion, one Sky Blue player was dismissed for giving the ref the benefit of his opinion on the incident. The Sky Blues were reduced to ten for a retaliatory trip (when the instigator went unpunished).

In between all this, there was quite a good game of football, with both sides exchanging early goals. Steve Walsh set up Neil McGowan for the equaliser after defensive lapses had allowed Bray to score first. Bray added a second on the half hour, with the penalty awarded just a minute later. 1-3.

Undaunted, Spartak attacked repeatedly in the second period and created plenty of opportunities. Steve Grier sent Ger Byrne through but his shot was hasty and wide. Neil McGowan fired just over, before Ger Byrne found himself clear again, but his effort was saved. Niall Lennon cracked a long range effort off the post.

Finally Spartak got a late consolation when Steve Grier converted Steve Walsh’s cross.

Form Report
Karl McCullagh 4 Cian Donohoe 5 Dave Browne 4 Steve Grier 7 Darragh Logue 7 Stuart Love 7 Neil McGowan 7 Mick Young 5 Niall Lennon 6 Ger Byrne 6 Steve Walsh 6
Subs: Ian Harmon 6 Geoff Abraham 6

Wasted Opportunity

Filed under: General news, Saturday LSL team by: Paul McGowan

11.2.17
Spartak 1, Corduff 4

In atrocious conditions in Marlay, Spartak missed many scoring chances to have this game sealed in the first half.

A first half header from Mick Young gave the Sky Blues the lead, but the visitors equalised when the ball was pulled back from an out-of-play position just before half time. The referee, unfortunately, was on the half way line, and allowed the score to stand.

Even allowing for this setback, Spartak should have been out of sight by then, after taking the lead, with good chances missed by Ciaran Keane, Owen McCormack and Dave Haczynskyj. Mick Greene, deputising in goal for the injured Greg Byrne, made a couple of decent stops.

Corduff, emboldened by the equaliser, took the lead early in the second period with a breakaway goal.

The Sky Blues then laid siege to the visitors goal, Dave HAczynskyj firing wide of an unguarded goal, Owen MCCormack too slow to pass to an unmarked Conor Callis, Conor Brady firing over from a rebound, and OWen McCormack fireing a few efforts too close to the keeper.

As conditions deteriorated, Corduff scored a third as Spartak pushed on; Mick Greene made a fine save from another attack. Corduff added a fourth in injury time.

Failure to take straightforward chances at key stages of the game proved to be Spartak’s undoing.

Form Report
Mick Greene 7 Chris Hogan 5 Cian Stenson 8 Mick Young 6 Darren Ritchie 6 Shane McInerney 7 Sean Molloy 6 Conor Canavan 5 Ciaran Keane 5 Dave Haczynskyj 5 Owen McCormack 5
Subs: Conor Callis 5 Geoff Abraham 5 Conor Brady 5 Leo Bradley 5

Maurice Timmins – an appreciation

Filed under: General news, Over 35 team, Saturday LSL team, Sunday LSL team by: Paul McGowan

Maurice Timmins, who passed away suddenly on 22nd February, was closely associated with Spartak in the ’80s and ’90s.

While he played for Spartak occasionally, Maurice’s main role was as physical trainer. He led his charges on lengthy runs around the Churchtown and Rathfarnham areas on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. The toughness of those runs were recalled recently by some former players, who winced at the memory!

It was also noticeable how many players developed sudden hamstring strains and had to sit out the runs, only to miraculously recover to full fitness for the football at the end…they got little sympathy from Maurice!

Maurice gradually drifted away from Spartak as he concentrated on his real love, marathon running, and completed over 200 marathons, some in far off places.

Maurice is fondly remembered as a cheerful and dedicated individual, and his contribution to Spartak was a valuable one.

May he Rest in Peace.

Last Man Standing

Filed under: General news by: Paul McGowan

A Last Man Standing competition will be i place for the start of April. €10 per team, contact Mick Greene or Barry O’Connor to get involved.

AGM

Filed under: General news by: Paul McGowan

The Annual General Meeting will take place on Thursday 30th March at 9.30 in The Eden House, Rathfarnham.