Thrilling climax to FAI Umbro U17 Cup beckons
Carrigaline United from County Cork will face the ultimate challenge on Sunday when they play Dublin’s Belvedere in the final of the FAI Umbro U17 National Cup at Turner’s Cross (3.00 pm ko).
Belvedere will go into the contest with an impressive record of success at national level in underage football behind them; Carrigaline will be playing in their first national cup final.
The meeting of the two after a long and demanding competition provides us with the classic final confrontation.
On the one hand is a Belvedere team wearing a club shirt that is legendary in Irish football, sporting colours that were worn by youngsters who went on to enjoy successful careers in senior football.
On the other is a Carrigaline team representing up of our most ambitious and efficiently run clubs, a club that is comparatively young in years but making rapid strides in the game.
This group of young players will make history on Sunday regardless of the result and the winners of the trophy are certain to take added satisfaction from knowing they had to overcome opponents of genuine quality after an arduous competition in order to win.
Indicative of how difficult it was for both teams to reach this final is the experience of Carrigaline who twice had to survive the excruciating challenge of a penalty shoot-out to survive.
Carrigaline found themselves two goals down to St. Francis in round four but fought back to level and win the game on penalties. And in the quarter-final they surrendered a two goals lead to College Corinthians and again prevailed after extra time in a shoot-out.
Carrigaline also had to defeat Douglas Hall, Buttevant, Cork City and Southend United to reach this final.
Belvedere had to negotiate an equally difficult path and scored victories over Bohemian, Palmerstown Rangers, Greystones United, Cherry Orchard and Home Farm to earn their right of passage.
Now both teams look forward to the final, searching, test in the knowledge that they have excelled to get this far and while one of the two will ultimately have to deal with disappointment, they will acknowledge in time the level of their achievement in marching so proudly to the final of a National competition.
A great game is in prospect and we extend our best wishes to both ahead of a contest that will surely provide us with a thrilling climax to the season.
FAI Umbro U17 Challenge Cup final
Carrigaline United v Belvedere FC
Date: Sunday 16th May 2010
Venue: Turner’s Cross
Kick off: 3.00p.m.