Owen Heary was in buoyant mood on Tuesday night after watching his side progress to the quarter-finals of this season's EA SPORTS Cup thanks to a 7-2 rout of fellow promotion hopefuls Drogheda United at Tolka Park. The two SSE Airtricity First Divis
Owen Heary was in buoyant mood on Tuesday night after watching his side progress to the quarter-finals of this season's EA SPORTS Cup thanks to a 7-2 rout of fellow promotion hopefuls Drogheda United at Tolka Park.
The two SSE Airtricity First Division sides made wholesale changes to their squads and for Shelbourne it proved the right call as they took a four-goal lead into the break.
Veteran centre-back - and captain for the night - Dave Mulcahy gave them the lead when he headed home from a corner after 20 minutes. Dylan Grimes then made it 2-0, before Cian Kavanagh took advantage of an error from Luca Gratzer in the Drogheda goal to make it three in four minutes for Shels.
Jamie Doyle added a fourth from the spot before adding to their suffering with another strike three minutes after the restart. Drogheda pulled two goals back after Shane Farrell hit Shels' sixth, but Doyle made sure he had the last say with a sensational 30-yard strike into the top corner.
"Most of the lads haven't played in a while," Heary said after the game. "The younger lads in particular put in a great shift, passed the ball really well, and took their goals very well – especially Jamie's one near the end."
The two quick-fire goals for Drogheda was the only blemish on the night for Shelbourne, but Heary knows that can sometimes happen when a team dominates for virtually the whole game.
"It comes from a little bit of complacency when you are winning the game 6-0 and that sees a little drop off in standard. That's the only disappointing thing on the night, but we are into the next round and that's all that matters to us."
Shelbourne will now make the trip up North to take on Derry City as they look to book a place in the semi-finals, and Heary knows his young side are in for a tough tie.
"For the younger players; it is a challenge for them. Going to the Brandywell to a new astro pitch that they'll be well used to. They are doing well since they moved into their new ground but it's something to look forward to come the Bank Holiday. We are not going up there just to make up the numbers; we’re going up to try and win and get into a semi-final."