Caulfield deserves plaudits for near-perfect away performance

Alan O’Brien 

John Caulfield is not a man inclined to rest on his laurels. A reinvigorated Dundalk pose a serious threat to Cork City’s recent double-winning hegemony. But anyone who doubts Caulfield’s stomach for the fight need only play back the 73rd minute of this near-perfect away performance. Continue reading

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Bit O’Red obtain a Lyttle relief from newfound McCabe freedom

Alan O’Brien 

This was Limerick’s sixth defeat of an eight-game winless run that stretches back to March 12. It was also their most damning. Continue reading

Flaky Rovers iced by Leahy 99

Alan O’Brien 

Football really is a funny old game. Quite how a side as unstructured as Stephen Bradley’s Shamrock Rovers managed to avoid defeat on home soil for eight months is anyone’s guess. But surprise was certainly thin on the ground when Darragh Leahy consigned that run to history’s dustbin at the death here. Continue reading

Both the Super Blues and Bohs are nothing without their nines

Alan O’Brien 

Considering both sides registered five blanks in their last seven games, this was always likely to be a stalemate. But if Dinny Corcoran and Mark O’Sullivan were fully fit, things could have been very different. Continue reading

Guardiola and self-doubt: the Klopp effect

Alan O’Brien 

When ideology meets pressure there is usually only one winner. History is littered with raging socialists whose left-wing zeal quickly moderated upon assuming any significant responsibility. In Greece, Alexis Tsipras’ Syriza party stands as the most recent high-profile example. Anti-establishmentarianism quickly morphed into fiscal rectitude when the time came to stick or twist. Continue reading

Marvelous Madden shines as Saints stretch spent Super Blues

Alan O’Brien 

Five games in a fortnight always looked a tough ask for Tommy Barrett’s razor-thin Limerick squad. Liam Buckley’s St Patrick’s Athletic lay in wait at the last stop, primed to take full advantage. Ultimately, Barrett’s spent Super Blues, bereft of answers to the Saints’ energy and width, were lucky to lose by one. Continue reading

Moment of Kelly madness settles sedate Markets Field affair

Alan O’Brien 

If the league insists on jamming eight fixtures into the first five weeks, non-events like this one are a given. Monday’s Markets Field clash had nil-all written all over it before Shaun Kelly’s ill-timed lunge at Ronan Finn. But lunge the full-back did, handing Shamrock Rovers a second consecutive scrappy win. Continue reading

Barrett comes of age with timely tactical triumph

Alan O’Brien 

The learning pathway was always bound to be a bumpy one for 38-year-old Tommy Barrett. Thrown in at the Limerick FC deep end, with no senior management experience, the eviscerations Barrett suffered in Dundalk and Derry were not exactly unexpected. Continue reading

Stricken Seagulls let Limerick off the hook

Alan O’Brien 

If banishing the ghosts of Oriel Park was foremost in Tommy Barrett’s mind, Bray Wanderers represented the perfect foil. As passive as Dundalk were aggressive, as profligate as the Lilywhites were clinical, Dave Mackey’s basement boys gifted Limerick a morale-boosting victory. Continue reading