Football: Murphy Double Sees the Saints March into New Era in Fine Style; WATER BOYS CAN'T STEM RED & WHITE TIDE St Pat's 3 Waterford 0

The Mirror (London, England), March 17, 2007 | Go to article overview
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Football: Murphy Double Sees the Saints March into New Era in Fine Style; WATER BOYS CAN'T STEM RED & WHITE TIDE St Pat's 3 Waterford 0


Byline: Garry DOYLE

THEY dressed like Arsenal - and there were times last night when St Pat's played like them too.

Winning for the fourth successive time this season, the Saints now top the eircom League as well as their Setanta Cup group.

Of course, it is still early in the season and they remain a work in progress yet it is equally obvious there is a momentum building around this Inchicore club which may be hard for anyone to stop.

With a new owner in situ, and a new stadium in the pipeline, all St Pat's now need is a team to fill it.

And they have the makings of one here - a side whose confidence is overflowing and whose attitude is simply magnificent.

Forget for a moment, the swashbuckling style with which they are attempting to play. Forget too, the presence of three creative midfielders in their fluent 3-5-2 system.

Let's first refer to their substance, their work-ethic, their passion, their understanding of each other's role.

Without this basis, there would not be the opportunity for Keith Fahey, Joseph Ndo and Alan Kirby to strut their stuff.

Yet within the framework of a carefully defined game-plan, these Patrick's players know when to get their hands dirty and when to turn on the charm.

Last night they did both, scoring three times against a plucky, if limited, Waterford side who have clearly improved from last season but who were simply not good enough to contain John McDonnell's men.

It has to be said, though, that events conspired against the Blues.

Had Vinny Sullivan's superb seventh minute header crept over the goal line, when instead it was wonderfully saved by Barry Ryan, then who knows how this game may have transpired?

Yet, in the final analysis, goalkeepers are paid to produce moments of quality at decisive periods in the game and Ryan earned his wages last night.

Ultimately, it was clear that if Pat's scored first last night then they would go on and win with a fair degree of ease.

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