Derry’s dream is killed off by Kiely
Derry City 0 Cork City 1
A battling display by Cork City was enough to book their place against Glentoran in the Setanta Sports Cup final, following this hard fought 1-0 success over Derry City.
A diving header from Timmy Kiely was enough to separate the sides in what was another titanic battle.
The Candystripes were without suspended duo Stephen Gray and Kevin Deery, while Cork had midfielder Colin Healy and striker Denis Behan both missing through injuries.
However the Rebel Army did welcome back defender Danny Murphy and also the experienced skipper Dan Murray.
The home side showed their intent as they won five corners in the opening few minutes, unfortunately three of Niall McGinn’s deliveries failed to beat the near post.
A long throw-in by Mark McChrystal in the 17th minute found Sammy Morrow inside the six yard box, but the former Northern Ireland Under 21 international saw his cross-cum-shot from an acute angle pushed away by Mark McNulty.
Ten minutes later a superb last ditch tackle by Pat Sullivan denied Mark Farren a goal scoring chance and McGinn was unable to trouble McNulty with the follow-up.
The visitors never really threatened until just after the half-hour mark but left-back Murphy saw his long range drive flash just over Gerard Doherty’s bar.
Soon after, in the 34th minute, Cork missed the best chance of the half when Joe Gamble failed to take advantage of some slick Derry defending and dragged his 20 yard shot well wide of the target.
Like previous encounters between these two sides both defensive were on top.
However, Derry certainly went all out to try and win the tie, in normal time, when they brought on Kevin McHugh for the disappointing Billy Dennehy at half-time.
McHugh was in the thick of the action in the 60th minute when his low cross found McGinn, who incidentally was watched by Premiership giants Chelsea, blazed over from close range.
The deadlock was finally broken seven minutes later when centre-back Murray somehow found himself racing down the left wing before playing in an outstanding cross and the brave Timmy Kiely powerfully headed home from six yards.
The Brandywell men had strong claims for a penalty turned down by referee David Malcolm in the 77 minute.
Farren, who was City’s hero last week during their 3-0 win over Linfield, looked as though he was brought down inside the area by the on-rushing McNulty, but the Bangor official waved play on much to the annoyance of the Derry faithful.
Deep into stoppage time Farren went close to levelling matters but his goal bound shot was superbly blocked by Murray.
Derry City: Doherty, McGlynn, Delaney, McCallion, McChrystal; McGinn, Molloy, Martyn, Dennehy; Morrow, Farren. Subs: McHugh for Denney (Half-time); Higgins for Martyn (68).
Cork City: McNulty, Horgan, Sullivan, Murray, Danny Murphy; Ryan, Darren Murphy, Gamble, Kearney, Kiely; Dudfield. Subs: O’Connor for Kearney (68); Cambridge for Kiely (90).
Referee: David Malcolm (Bangor).