Moore's double secures league title for North End
North End delivered on back-to-back titles as two second-half Andy Moore goals helped them collect all three points over a battling Moyne Rangers outfit in this Wexford Football League Premier Division clash at Belvedere on Tuesday.
North End United 2 Moyne Rangers 0
Going into this game, North End needed three points in the event of Shamrock Rovers winning their remaining two games, but with four games still left to play, and holding a five-point advantage, the odds were always on the trophy remaining in the grasp of the Wexford town side.
As it transpired, and with word filtering through from Enniscorthy where Rovers were eventually on the end of an 8-1 drubbing from Courtown Hibs, the game turned into a non-event of sorts as the title was North End's irrespective of the outcome of this clash.
And despite those four games left to play, there was still joyous scenes as the North End players, mentors and supporters enjoyed the presentation of the cup. They still have an opportunity to go on and have the widest points gap of any side in the history of the league in lifting the trophy.
Shamrock Rovers fielded what was practically a reserve side for Tuesday evening's league clash as they looked ahead to the cup final clash with their arch-rivals on Sunday.
North End started off cautiously as at the outset the destination of the title could have been decided by the outcome of this game. After teasing out the Moyne challenge through the opening 20 minutes, they began to bring more tempo to their game approaching the interval.
Influential midfielder Gary Dempsey was particularly prominent with a couple of headers that just flashed wide. With Moyne unable to capitalise on some good outfield football, the sides were still deadlocked 0-0 at the interval.
At that stage news had filtered through of Courtown demolishing the weak Rovers outfit and with it a more relaxed North End approached the second period. They controlled possession, going tantalisingly close on several occasions before they eventually broke the deadlock after 62 minutes.
Following great play from Jason Swords down the left, his pass picked out Shane Dempsey. Dempsey held possession before sliding a pass into the path of Moore who applied a clinical finish from eight metres, making it 1-0.
North End were clearly enjoying themselves as they introduced substitutes Paul and Jason Murphy. A fine run and cross from Jason set up Moore for his second after 89 minutes, while some minutes earlier Moore had a goal disallowed for an offside call that denied him a hat-trick.
'We have set a standard all season so we were determined to maintain it. Even knowing what was happening elsewhere we were determined to maintain our winning run,' manager John Godkin said.
North End United: Lee Walker, Lee Aust, Deckie Downes, Stuart Lawlor, Lee Smith, Gary Dempsey, Jason Swords, Shane Dempsey, Kyle Dempsey, Adam Beary, Andy Moore. Subs. - Warren Broaders, Robin Dempsey, Paul Murphy, Jason Murphy, John Fenlon, Dylan Owens.
Moyne Rangers: Gary Murphy, Seán Burke, Richard Farrell, Pa O'Shea, Ryan Mahon, James Peare, Kamil Kututizivs, Robert Vickers, Rory O'Connor, Tommy Foley, Brian Ronan. Subs. - Brian Davis, Tommy Dwyer, Jimmy O'Leary, Paul McVeigh, Joshua O'Byrne.
Referee: Mark Hogan.