Scorers: Darren Collins 2, Jack O’Carroll & Daniel Egan
The last game of the day saw an absolute thriller between the U18 sides from Newport & Caherdavin. Both clubs knew that a win was vital to keep alive any chance of catching league leaders Cals. Caherdavin opened the scoring in the 5th minute when Newport failed to clear a ball and their player rifled home after picking up the loose ball. Newport equalised in the 12th minute when left-back, Jack Noble put in a pin-point cross to captain, Darren Collins, who brilliantly controlled the ball on his chest and fired home with a half-volley. The rest of the first half was a very tight affair with both sides cancelling out each others’ efforts.
Newport took the lead for the first time in the 53rd minute when Jack O’Carroll scored his 13th goal of the season for the youths after latching onto a cross from substitute Thomas Floyd. However, in keeping with the topsy-turvy nature of this game, the visitors equalised in the 58th minute to make it 2-2. Just 2 minutes later, Jack Noble was fouled about 25 yards from goal and team captain, Darren Collins scored his second with a pile-driver free-kick, which crashed in off the underside of the bar.
Caherdavin had a numerical advantage towards the end of the game and made it 3-3 with just 7 minutes left on the clock. It woud have been no surprise at this stage of the game to see Caherdavin go on to win the game. However the Newport youths showed brilliant determination, character and a never-say-die spirit to put bodies on the line when needed and then scored an incredible winner deep into injury time. Jack O’Carroll did superbly out on the left hand-side to deliver a perfect cross to the back-post after some good inter-play with Thomas Floyd. His cross was expertly headed home by the tireless Daniel Egan after he made a great run into the box to spark off wild celebrations amongst the entire Newport squad and leave Caherdavin dumbfounded as to how the home side pulled this one out of the fire.
All the Newport players played well today but special mention for Killian O’Malley, who switched to centre-half early in the first-half and put in a man-of-the-match performance. He was closely followed by the hard-working Daniel Egan and John Ryan Rose on his return from a few weeks out due to injury. Newport must win their three remaining league games and hope that other results go their way to have any hope of catching Cals but this win will give them great confidence for the rest of the season.
Match Squad: Josh White, Killian O’Malley, Jack Noble, Robert Duggan, John Ryan Rose, Ciaran Flynn, Darren Collins (C), Brendan McMahon, Devon Ryan, Daniel Egan, Jack O’Carroll, Thomas Floyd, Chris Carmody, Jack Ryan Cooper, Cian O’Connell & Haytam Kamil