FOYLE CUP FINALS: McEneff strike seals U16 title for Derry Colts

Derry's players congratulate goalscorer Nathan McEneff after scoring what proved to be the winner in the under-16 final. 'Photo Lorcan Doherty Photography.
Derry's players congratulate goalscorer Nathan McEneff after scoring what proved to be the winner in the under-16 final. 'Photo Lorcan Doherty Photography.

Derry Colts 1, Inishowen Youth League 0

CORNSHELL FIELDS lad Nathan McEneff was hailed the hero as his superb late strike was enough to claim the Under-16 Foyle Cup title for Derry Colts in the last of the three finals at Brandywell Stadium.

Derry City U19 captain Ciaran Harkin celebrates with team members. The Derry City U17s made it two Foyle Cup victories for the Brandywell side while Derry Colts made it a clean sweep with victory in the Under-16 final.

Derry City U19 captain Ciaran Harkin celebrates with team members. The Derry City U17s made it two Foyle Cup victories for the Brandywell side while Derry Colts made it a clean sweep with victory in the Under-16 final.

After a largely uneventful first half, Derry Colts emerged after the break in determined fashion. Inishowen keeper, Jason McCallion had done his best to keep the Colts’ attack at bay but he could do nothing to stop McEneff’s 20 yard strike on 48 minutes.

And that proved enough for the Colts to ensure their name was on the prestigious Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup trophy for 2015.

The Inishowen League outfit had started brightly and almost capitalised on an inswinging cross from the left from Eunan Mullan but Rhys McGahey cut out the danger with a superb sliding tackle on 15 minutes.

Derry Colts’ Ciaran Deery was causing havoc with his missile-like long throws and when Mark Doherty met one with his head, it was hooked clear.

Matty Doherty tried his luck from distance on 25 minutes when he rifled his shot towards goal but it went narrowly over.

Inishowen keeper, Jason McCallion produced two excellent saves to deny Mark Doherty from distance and then Nathan McEniff from close range on the stroke of half-time.

It was the best action of a relatively quiet first half as both sides went in at the interval scoreless.

Two minutes after the break Derry Colts had the ball in the back of the net when Deery’s long throw was flicked on by Mark Doherty and Ryan Doran diverted it into the net at the back post. However the referee’s assistant quickly raised his flag for offside.

The Colts continued to press forward and Dylan Devine was played in behind the Inishowen defence but his shot was saved superbly by McCallion.

With just 12 minutes to go and Inishowen sitting back Nathan McEneff, brother of former Tottenham Hotspur’s Aaron, found space and blasted his strike low into the bottom corner from 20 yards.

Inishowen Youth League pressed for an equaliser but they were met by a stubborn Derry Colts defence who went on to lift the trophy much to the delight of the large Brandywell attendance.

Derry Colts: Tiernan Hargan; Aodhfin Barbour, Ciaran Deery, Conal Fagan, Matty Doherty; Rhys McGahey, , Emmet Heaney, Dean Sweeney, Nathan McEniff, Dylan Devine; Ryan Doran; Subs - Rhys McDermott, Dean Sweeney, Matthew Williamson, Adam Lamberton.

Inishowen YL: Jason McCallion; James Adair, Shane Dillon, Shaun McLaughlin, Ben Doherty, Darragh Deery, Eunan Mullan, Gareth Foynes Bart Wesoloski, Oisin Hession, Evan Tweed; Subs - Brendan Doherty, Evan Barry, Conor McGeoghaghan Denver Kelly, Dayton Cooke.