Youths downed by Cork double
Home loss for U-19 crew
A first-half double from Denzil Fernandez earned high-flying Cork City the points against a spirited Wexford Youths outfit in the SSE Airtricity League Under-19 Southern Elite Division at Ferrycarrig Park on Saturday.
Wexford Youths 0 Cork City 2
Fernandez stroked the ball home on 19 minutes after Alec Byrne's effort had bounced back off the underside of the crossbar, and he doubled their tally eight minutes before the break.
The visitors were well on top in the opening period and it looked like a facile victory could be on the cards, but Wexford Youths showed admirable resolve after the interval and their defence wasn't breached again.
The Leesiders began the game brightly and had their first sight of goal on six minutes when Alec Byrne took aim from outside the box after being found by Fernandez, but it was comfortable for Youths goalkeeper Dylan Furlong.
Moments later Chiedozie Ogbene tried his luck, but again Furlong wasn't troubled and on 18 minutes Cian Leonard headed a difficult chance wide.
A minute later Cork City were in front when an Alec Byrne effort hit the underside of the crossbar and Fernandez was on hand to loop a half-volley into the net.
Like the crossbar, the Wexford Youths defence was clearly rattled and Cian Leonard twice went close to extending the Cork advantage in the frantic five-minute spell that followed.
First a hurried clearance from netminder Furlong ricocheted off the forward and drifted narrowly wide, and minutes later the number nine angled a header narrowly over the bar.
Cork City did double their lead on 37 minutes when Fernandez ran on to a slide rule pass from Cian Leonard and confidently arrowed the ball to the back of the net.
Wexford Youths dug deep in the second-half, with defenders making a number of timely challenges as they restricted a talented Cork City outfit to few chances of note.
In fact, it wasn't until the 84th minute that the visitors had another sniff of goal, with Chiedozie Ogbene seeing his shot blocked, before steering the follow-up wide.
Owen McCormack had a half-chance to pull one back for the Youths in injury time when the ball fell at his feet following a Michael Molloy corner, but his stabbed effort was straight at goalkeeper David Coffey.
Cork City twice went close to putting the icing on the cake deep into time added on, with Patrick Crowley hitting the right-hand post and substitute Darren Murphy seeing his effort well saved by Dylan Furlong.
Wexford Youths: Dylan Furlong, Martin O'Connor, Seán Duffy, Owen McCormack, Michael Molloy, Conor Sutton (capt.), Daniel Brennan, Eoin Donnelly, Eoin Porter, Vincent Quinlan, Adam Rochford. Subs. - Dean George for Rochford (59), Cian Li for Donnelly (81), also Paul Carton, Cormac Kehoe, Neil Murphy, Eric Quinn, Adam Dempsey.
Cork City: David Coffey, Kevin Taylor, Pierce Phillips, Cian Coleman (capt.), Adam O'Sullivan, Daire O'Riordan, Denzil Fernandez, Patrick Crowley, Cian Leonard, Alec Byrne, Chiedozie Ogbene. Subs. - Eli Khadi Harrington for Coleman (41), Jordan O'Regan for Leonard (54), George Gill for Byrne (79), Darren Murphy for Fernandez (79), also Aaron Drinan, William Cronin, Adam Mylod.
Referee: Brian Fenlon.