Deja vu for Dundalk as Caulfield’s Cork impose their will again

Alan O’Brien 

When it comes to Cork City’s storied rivalry with Dundalk, there is nothing new under the sun. Friday’s latest chapter was almost a shot-for-shot rerun of the sides’ last Turner’s Cross engagement. The Lilywhites grabbed an unmerited point on that September occasion, thanks to a late Robbie Benson leveler.  Alas for Stephen Kenny, that was precisely where this tedious remake deviated from the original. Continue reading

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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

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