Thanks to Martin Ogbourn for this match report.
This Saturday morning started as some others have done, with a late drop-out to leave us with a bare 11 for the most important game of the season. Thankfully with adaptable players and a shuffling of the pack, City managed to make it through to the semi-final for the third time in their history and their first since 2011. Sheppard and Brown covered successfully in unfamiliar positions, and Mick McCarthy started and scored in his first full game for the club. All three players made significant contributions.
The match was an even, tight contest in the first half with both teams missing chances and the keepers making crucial saves. Charlemont seemed to have more possession, but City created the clearer chances. City eventually took the lead through a composed run and finish from McCarthy (HT 0-1).
The wind was a constant factor and this seemed to assist City at the start of the second half as we gained more control of the game. City played some good passing football and extended their lead through a quality long range driven shot by Green and a deft lobbed finish from Maggs, who caused problems all day for the Charlemont defence.
However, City failed to kill the game off completely as several counter attacks were unsuccessful. Charlemont didn’t give up and pushed greater numbers forward as the half wore on after substitutions. They got one back with about 10 minutes left from an exquisite free-kick on the edge of the box and with virtually the last kick of the game narrowed the deficit to 2-3 with a good finish inside the box.
Overall it was a very good competitive cup tie played on a heavy pitch in windy conditions so that was a credit to both sides. Charlemont had some good attacking players on show and we wish them well for the season. City look forward to a cup semi-final and a strong league finish. Man-of-the-match in my opinion was Dan Green, but there were also notable performances all over the pitch.