DCU won’t feel too hard done by over this game after being left to rue a host of missed chances as they lost 2-1 to an organised DIT outfit. In the end they only had themselves to blame as they were simply too wasteful in front of goal.
DCU went into the game on decent form off the back of an opening day win against city rivals UCD and a 1-1 draw with league leaders NUI Maynooth.
However, a sloppy goal conceded in the opening two minutes and a second in the 35th minute, meant Declan Roche’s charges were always going to struggle in the blustery conditions in Cabra.
DIT looked lively from the off, with Lindo Majola impressing in the forward line. His pass in the second minute caught the DCU defence napping and strike partner Jamal Traore latched onto the through ball, before supplying a cool finish to give the home side an early lead.
Roche’s side were level just minutes later, when a lofted ball found its way to DCU’s leading goalscorer, Alan O’Sullivan, who lifted the ball over a helpless Gavin Moore and slid the ball into an empty net.
From then on the Glasnevin side seemed in control. Irish junior international Luke Kelly showed glimpses of sheer class, both his touch and ability to turn quickly were sublime as he sprayed the ball out wide.
DCU enjoyed a series of good chances in the subsequent minutes. O’Sullivan failed to add to his tally, blazing over from close range in the 10th minute.
The real threat came from Dean Gregan down the left channel, who time and again slipped past Conor Dowd, and flashed the ball across the box. O’Sullivan should have given the visitors the lead with a free header on 16 minutes.
It was DIT, however, who made the most of their limited chances and in the 35th minute, their diligence paid off.
Dean Gibbons lofted a 25 yard free-kick into the box and after some poor defending, the ball found its way to the feet of Rhys Gorman and he blasted home from close range.
The DCU anxiety was evident after the goal as the goalkeeping coach was sent from the sideline after exchanging words with a match official.
After the interval, it was all DIT with Gibbons again making a nuisance of himself, forcing a good save from David Flaherty.
From then on O’Sullivan was slowly phased out of the game, with DIT intent on keeping possession and seeing the game out. On two separate occasions, DCU were caught too high up the pitch and Robbie Gaul came to the rescue against a three-pronged DIT attack.
The substitutions made little impact and despite DCU’s continuing efforts to keep the game flowing through quick restarts, a draw seemed out of reach.
A late DCU resurgence in the final 10 minutes saw some frantic last gasp efforts, the best of which came from Mark Walshe. O’Sullivan slipped a ball through the DIT defence and Walshe’s effort produced a fine save from Gavin Moore.
DCU will have felt unlucky to come away with nothing, especially after squandering a number of excellent chances. DIT, however, came away with a much needed three points to see them rise to 4th in the CUFL Premier Division North.
Image Credit: Cian Roche