Waterford FC capped off a memorable weekend for the club as the Under-17s lifted the SSE Airtricity League Mark Farren Memorial Cup after a 4-2 win over Sligo Rovers. Sligo Rovers got off to a great start as they went ahead with just 12 seconds on t
Waterford FC capped off a memorable weekend for the club as the Under-17s lifted the SSE Airtricity League Mark Farren Memorial Cup after a 4-2 win over Sligo Rovers.
Sligo Rovers got off to a great start as they went ahead with just 12 seconds on the clock. From the kick-off, Rovers worked the ball down the left and found Liam Kerrigan who slid the ball under the keeper for a lightening start.
It took the home side a while to settle in front of the 724 crowd at the Regional Sports Centre but got themselves on level terms in the 24th minute. Adam Conway danced down the right wing, past two defenders to find Jack Larkin who found the bottom corner from just outside the area.
Rovers continued to create chances as Heffernan denied Aaron Perry from close range and Kerrigan hit the post with a long-range free-kick from the left.
Waterford ended the first-half strongly and went ahead just past the half-hour. After a defensive mix-up between defender and goalkeeper, Colm Whelan stole in to poke home, the 15th consecutive game he has scored in.
An eventful first-half continued in the same vein after the break as Rovers pulled themselves level in the 53rd minute. Goalkeeper Heffernan couldn't collect Mark Byrne's shot and Cian McAllister followed up to tap the ball home.
Despite a lengthy period of Rovers dominance, Waterford took the lead once again with just over a quarter of an hour remaining. Ciaran Brennan got past two defenders down the left and found substitute Regix Madika who was able to slot the ball home under keeper Luke McNicholas.
With five minutes remaining, Sligo had a great chance to draw themselves level as Byrne's lofted cross found an open Scott Lynch at the back post but his tame header was straight at the keeper.
The Regional Sports Centre had another reason to celebrate in the final minutes of the game as substitute Mike Nzongong headed home from a Jack O'Donnell cross as Waterford FC lifted their second trophy in two days.
Waterford U17 manager John Furlong said: "It was a great performance from the players and they fully deserve the trophy.
"It was a really difficult game for us, even though it was probably great for the neutral. We had to show excellent character to come back from behind and come on strong in the end to win it.
"It has been a great season for the club at all levels and to lift our second trophy in two days shows that the future is really bright for this club."
Waterford FC: Heffernan (GK), Broaders (Adegoke 80), Conway (Knox 76), Walsh, Beresford (O'Donnell 75), Larkin (C), Costello (Madika 60), Power, Whelan (Nzongong 87), Brennan, Waters.
Subs not used: Kirwan, Tracy.
Sligo Rovers: McNicholas (GK), Smith (C), Whyte (A. Lynch 54), Mulligan, Morahan, Munnelly (Lynch 83), McAllister (McGrath 69), Byrne, Collins (O'Reilly 87), Kerrigan, Perry.
Subs: Staunton, Keogh, O'Connor.
Referee: Pat O'Connor.