Three successive wins achieved as Athlone Town claim brace of crucial home league points

Dean Ebbe continued his fine start to the season when he netted a brace of goals during Athlone Town’s home win over Cobh Ramblers. Photo by Michael P Ryan/Sportsfile

Dean Ebbe continued his fine start to the season when he netted a brace of goals during Athlone Town’s home win over Cobh Ramblers. Photo by Michael P Ryan/Sportsfile

ATHLONE TOWN 2 COBH RAMBLERS 1

John Dingle

Athlone Town made it three successive wins on Friday night last, Dean Ebbe netting twice as the home team saw off a second half response from Cobh Ramblers to claim a brace of crucial league points.

There was no shot on target early on as both teams struggled. Charlie O’Brien for Cobh had the first chance but blasted wide while Ebbe had the Towns first chance moments later. The only corner of the half was earned by Athlone after 26 minutes with Carl Mujaguzi then off target from long range.

The goal the game needed finally came four minutes before the break. Ramblers’ centre back Justin Equaibor lost possession to Ebbe and the number nine then took his time, after rounding goalkeeper Darragh Burke, to place the ball in the bottom left corner of the net for his fifth goal of the campaign. Mujaguzi fired over to end the action in the half with the goal remaining the only highlight of the first 45 minutes.

There was a lot more excitement in the second half with Cobh denied an equaliser by the woodwork and Ebbe then doubling the lead, all in the first 10 minutes. Ramblers came close on 51 minutes when Dean Larkin headed against the bar with a first Cobh corner following.

Athlone’s Matthew Leal then had a shot saved. The lead was doubled after 56 minutes when Ebbe grabbed his second of the game. Good approach play down the stand side saw Jamar Campion-Hinds link up well with Brian Torre. The latter advanced to the end line and then delivered a low cross to the near post from the left, Ebbe on hand to shoot home from close range.

It looked like Athlone were on course to collect another three points at this stage but Cobh were handed a way back into the contest from the next noteworthy action as half time substitute Brendan Frahill fired to the net after 67 minutes when the home defence was exposed on the edge of the penalty area following a long throw in.

The visitors now became the dominant force as they went in pursuit of an equaliser. Athlone earned another corner moments after the Cobh goal but it was generally a defensive battle for the home team to fight during the closing stages. Home keeper Enda Minogue pulled off two fine saves in the closing stages to keep Athlone ahead, a brilliant save to deny substitute James O’Leary with three minutes remaining was the highlight of a fine display by the number one.

Athlone might have made the closing stages more comfortable had substitute Gideon Tetteh found the net in the penultimate minute on the counter attack. The finish from Tetteh however did not match the good approach play as the ball was fired wide of the target from the edge of the box. Six additional minutes kept the tension in the home ranks at a high level but Cobh could not make any further progress in their comeback. Athlone remain unbeaten at home in 2024.

 

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