Connacht Junior Cup Final   21/05/2015

All roads will lead to Eamonn Deacy Park this Sunday afternoon as the club’s junior team contest the Connacht Junior Cup final when they take on Premier Division winners Athenry with kick-off at 3 pm. 

Ger McGrath and Stephen Lally’s side will be hoping to capture a provincial title for the first time in ten years for the club at junior level. Manager Ger McGrath was a member of the last club side to capture a Connacht Junior cup title back in 2005 when the team managed by Gary O’Connor and Ollie Neary defeated Sligo side Glenview Celtic 4-1 in that final. Two goals from Simon Murray and a goal each from Sean Murphy and Seamie Crowe, who is now the current Athenry player manager, secured that provincial win in Sligo.

Stephen Lally has already managed Mervue to provincial success when his side defeated Castlebar Celtic 1-0 courtesy of a first half Henry Loughnane strike in the 2002 final in Milebush. 

In all Mervue have won the Connacht Junior Cup title five times in the club's history. Billy Carr and Jaralth Connolly's side captured the third title in 1998 defeating neighbours Crescent Utd in the final as Davie Honan came off the bench to provide the winning goal in Terryland Park.

Mairtin Higgins managed the club side that captured the very first provincial junior title back in 1990 when Donnie Farragher scored four goals in the final to defeat Mayo side, Barcastle, 5-1 with Gary O’Connor adding the other goal. Farragher's record of the only player to ever score four goals in a Connacht Junior final stills stands to this day. That great junior side went on to retain the Connacht title the following year as goals from John Carr and Mike Cooke defeated Sligo side, College Corinthians, 2-1 in 1991.

Despite only losing one league game all season a fifth successive Premier Division title was not to be as Sunday's opposition Athenry were crowned league champions as Mervue's record of seven drawn games proved very costly in the end.

The sides drew 2-2 in their opening league encounter back in October as Stephen Cunningham and Eoin Concannon goals had Mervue in front on two occasions only for the home side to level for a share of the points. In the home game at Fahy's Field in March there was a comfortable win for Ger McGrath's side as they ran out 3-0 winners as the league title race became a close affair between the two sides and Corrib Rangers. Alex Lee scored twice in the opening half and Barry Moran added the third just after the break.

Sunday's game will no doubt be another tough encounter between two evenly matched sides and Athenry will be looking for a fifth Connacht Junior title themselves having already captured the title on four previous occasions all since Mervue last won the title in 2005. Athenry were winners in 2007, 2008, 2010 and 2011, a great record of four of the last nine years.

All support would be appreciated by the club in Deacy Park on Sunday afternoon as the club's juniors look to add a sixth provincial title to the club’s roll of honour. 

Best of luck to Gary, Stephen and the lads from everyone at the club. 



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