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Micky Kelly full of praise as St Paul's claim Junior Shield glory


Shield hero: Micky Kelly was held aloft after St Paul's' victory

Shield hero: Micky Kelly was held aloft after St Paul's' victory

Shield hero: Micky Kelly was held aloft after St Paul's' victory

"MICKY Mourinho" was the cry of jubilant St Paul's players and supporters alike, as they held their winning manager Micky Kelly aloft after beating fellow west Belfast side St Luke's in the Junior Shield final at Solitude last night.

But the man with the famous nickname was quick to pour all the praise on his team, and with the application now already put forward, he now hopes this victory may seal the deal on their proposed move from the Belfast & District League to the Amateur League next season.

"After seeing that, hopefully the Amateur League will see we aren't out of place against teams from their league," smiled Kelly. "We were the better team with all the chances. I get the best out of the boys, but it's all down to them."

St Luke's opened the scoring in the seventh minute. Paul O'Rourke played across to Aaron McKinney, whose shot was parried away only as far as O'Rourke, gratefully blasted into the net.

The reply from St Paul's arrived less than 10 minutes later – Tiarnan McGreevy sliding the ball up-field to Kevin Quinn, who slotted the ball into the bottom corner.

The Beechmount men took the lead in the 39th minute, with Kieran McCleave well placed in the box to nod home.

St Paul's pressurised their opponents' goal with a handful of chances in the second half. In the end, St Luke's didn't ask enough questions.

St Paul's: McIlwaine, Rowntree, Hall, McKinney, McClenaghan, Moore, McCleave, Quinn (McDonnell, 55), Heaney, Oliver, McGreevy

Subs not used: Saunders, McGreevy, Wilson, McGrady

St Luke's: Tierney, P Smyth (McGaughey, 60), Brady (Cosgrove, 80), Hughes, McCabe, McManus (S Smyth, 75), McDonnell, O'Brien, Munster, O'Rourke, McKinney

Subs not used: Callaghan, Williamson

Referee: Stuart McFarland (Belfast)

* Northern Ireland's Under-18 cruised to a 5-1 win over Wales in the Centenary Shield yesterday.

Meanwhile, the Northern Ireland girls' team won the Under-16 Uefa development tournament following a 2-0 win over Wales with Sarah Connolly netting both the goals.

Belfast Telegraph