Wednesday, 27 July 2011 19:00
Rovers fine performance keeps the tie alive...
FC Copenhagen 1 - Ottesen 4'
UEFA Champions League 3rd Qual. Round - Parken Stadium - Wed 27th July 2011
Hoops Line out
16 Ryan Thompson
2 Pat Sullivan
3 Enda Stevens
4 Craig Sives
17 Ken Oman
14 Dean Kelly
21 Ronan Finn
22 Conor McCormack
20 Billy Dennehy
6 Stephen Rice
19 Gary Twigg (c)
7 Gary McCabe
for Kelly 53'
5 Dan Murray
for Oman 83'
11 Ciaran Kilduff
for Rice 89'
19 Gary O'Neill
1 Richard Brush
13 Pat Flynn
15 Paddy Kavanagh
Ryan Thompson...two brilliant saves on his European debut
After the concession of an early goal the Hoops put in a fine battling performance to leave the Danish Capital only a goal down and now the stage is set for Tallaght next Tuesday.
The home side started with all guns blazing and before the Hoops could find their feet they found themselves a goal down when Ottesen was first to a cross following a corner and his bullet header flew into the top corner of the net.
Rovers didn’t fold however and Dennehy’s corner after 7 minutes caused problems in the home defence with Oman unlucky not to connect with the ball after the initial cross was cleared and returned into the box by Sullivan.
Dean Kelly couldn’t guide his header on target from McCormacks cross on 10 minutes but Rovers settled into the game with both Rice and McCormack snapping at the heels of the Copenhagen midfield.
Conor McCormack was adjudged to have fouled Satin 6 yards out from the Hoops box on 19 minutes but Bolanos shot just missed the target. After 22 minutes another good cross from the left saw Diouf shoot over the bar when well placed.
The game entered a pattern of Copenhagen having all the possession with Rovers content to guard their goal but Diouf got behind Sives down the left on 27 minutes but fortunately he curled his shot over the bar.
Rovers had a gilt edged chance to equalise a minute later when Pat Sullivan’s cross saw hesitancy in front of goal and Billy Dennehy pounced to shoot but ’keeper Wiland somehow blocked his effort.
Rovers continued to battle well with Oman an Sives working hard and at the other end when Kelly and Sullivan combined to win a free-kick the home side eventually scrambled the ball away.
A good punch by Ryan Thompson on 39 minutes was followed by a brilliant save two minutes later when the Jamaican tipped a goal bound header from Diouf over the bar. Copenhagen finished the ’half attacking but the Hoops defence held firm.
In the second-half the Hoops started better and Enda Stevens cross on 51 minutes saw Kelly just fail to get a touch on the ball to set up Twigg. Bengtsson tried his luck from all of 30 yards after a Foul by Finn but missed the target.
A Billy Dennehy corner was met by the head of Ken Oman but he failed to hit the target.
Rovers were holding their own against the Scandinavian giants but Ryan Thompson was called on again on 66 minutes to brilliantly push away a low shot from the edge of the area after good approach play.
Rovers hit back immediately when Dennehy’s low cross from the right saw Gary Twigg set up Rice to shoot. The ball fell to Finn on the left-hand side of the box but his shot went agonisingly across goal.
It was end to end stuff now and a minute later the home side had a chance from a corner but Claudemir saw his shot cleared in front of goal.
Just three minutes later Billy Dennehy raided down the left and his fine cross saw Captain Twigg rise to head on goal but Wiland dived to save. Ken Oman then made a fine tackle to deny Diouf a run on goal.
Ken Oman had to leave the game injured after another great challenge as the home side tried to prise open the Hoops rearguard but Rovers held firm and their performance was acclaimed by the large and vocal Twelfth man as the final whistle sounded after three minutes of added-on time.