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Conor McDonald: The Student

Started on 18 April 2020 by Jack
Latest Reply on 8 May 2024 by Michael R Wilson
Some incredible results this month against some of the big sides in the league. The 5-1 win over Limerick is probably the result of the season at this point seeing as it separates you from them and keeps you top. Some big results against the contenders and now with some of the lower ranking sides coming up you have a chance to take advantage.

Cobh Ramblers went unbeaten throughout May but not particularly on the terms that they would have wanted with two scoreless draws in the process. The Rams still lead the table as we head into June.

Glenn Bovaird’s Athlone Town were Cobh’s first opponents of the month in the league but the team sat at the bottom of the table stood firm against the league leaders under their new manager as the game ended 0-0 at St. Colman’s Park

9th placed Wexford were up next for Cobh at Ferrycarrig Park and for the second game in a row against considerably weaker opposition, Cobh could not get past their goalkeeper Mark O’Connor as Conor McDonald’s men went home frustrated with only one point in another scoreless draw.

At last, The Rams got a break against Cabinteely. After a tight first-half, fans and coaches alike were concerned that Cobh would be going three games without a goal.

However, in the second-half Cian Leonard - still covering for the injured Callum Jones - finally put the ball in the net for the first Cobh goal in 318 consecutive minutes. The goals then kept coming in the form of Remi Thompson and Harry Warwick who ensured a 3-0 win.

Cobh Ramblers then finished the month with a friendly against their cross-town rivals Cobh Wanderers as Alan O’Sullivan kept his 100% clean sheet record throughout May with Harry Warwick and Ben O’Riordan leading their team to a 2-0 victory at St. Colman’s Park.

Despite the poor results against the poor teams in this month, Cobh actually managed to extend their lead at the top thanks to a simultaneous but worse month from title rivals Limerick. Tommy Barrett’s outfit didn’t pick up a win this month, drawing two and losing their other game in May.

As a result, Aaron Dobbs has led Longford Town’s surge into 2nd place as they won every single game this month in the league as well as qualifying for the EA Sports Cup Semi-Final, handing the Manager of the Month award over to Tim Clancy.

Limerick sit in 3rd place now, six points behind the league leaders meanwhile Shelbourne have had another poor month under Jon Daly whose job is now at risk following a 1-0 loss to Cabinteely and a crushing 4-0 defeat to Finn Harps in May as they now trail nine points behind their predicted end-of-season spot.

As the season reaches its midpoint with all teams fifteen games into the First Division, it is a reminder of where it all went wrong for Cobh Ramblers last term.

Compared to last May, Cobh have had a much better month and their points and points difference between top and 2nd have increased a lot this year.

Where Cobh have 34 points now, they had 30 points last season and their lead at the top is five points whereas in May 2020, Cobh sat level on points with the eventual champions Drogheda United

Upcoming Fixtures:
Longford Town (A) - League
Limerick (N) - Munster Senior Cup Final
Shamrock Rovers (H) - Friendly
Galway United (A) - League
Longford Town (H) - Friendly

James: I'm very proud of mine and the team's performances throughout April, they were absolutely stunning.
Griffo: He's making enough of a name for himself on his own! ;)
Scott: The way I see it, we've done the cup once already, no need to go for it again ;) We've got a cup final next month anyway in the region! Limerick have fallen away and I am slightly confident that Longford don't have the quality to stretch this current run of form further.
Justice: Certainly, as shown above, we are ahead of where we were last year which means a lot, especially considering we lost the title by four points last season and now we have extended our lead to five points now!
Seb: I was absolutely delighted seeing the goals go in against Limerick, a superb all-round performance from the back to the front. We've not done well against the lower positioned teams as demonstrated here which is certainly something I need to keep an eye on going forward.
An interesting comparison to last season which shows progression and is extremely relevant, definitely. Limerick have fallen away a little and despite failure to win two of those games, Cobh look strong and hopefully can use the momentum from an unbeaten run to continue to push on from here.

Cobh lift Munster Senior Cup

Conor McDonald has won his second trophy as Cobh Ramblers manager as his team defeated Limerick 4-0 to take home the Munster Senior Cup.

Cobh Ramblers won the EA Sports Cup last season, beating Bohemian 2-0 in the Final at Oriel Park and he has added to the club’s trophy cabinet once again this season.

Jason Abbott set the tone for Limerick’s style of play in the first minute with an early yellow card for a foul on Harry Warwick as Tommy Barrett’s team attempted to finally defeat a Cobh team led by Conor McDonald.

Harry Warwick quickly put doubts over Limerick’s chances in the final as he scored a header from a Jamie O’Hara corner in the fifth minute.

With another Limerick yellow card for Andrew Neville shortly after the opener, Callum Jones doubled Cobh Ramblers lead in the 16th minute on his return to the starting eleven with a tidy side footed shot from inside the penalty area.

Jones added his brace six minutes after his first with a header from a perfect Jordan O’Brien cross from the right wing to make it 3-0 and crush any chance of a Limerick revival.

Limerick’s third yellow card came as Darragh Gannon brought down Harry Warwick who was a frequent target for the Super Blues’ aggressive play in defence.

A half-time grilling from Barrett didn’t take any effect on Limerick as Harry Warwick also scored his second goal of the game with a well-struck effort from the edge of the box, drilling it right into the bottom-left corner of Colum Feeney’s goal.

That was ultimately Cobh’s final goal as they secured the game with a more possession-based game from the fourth goal onwards. This was Cobh Ramblers’ sixth time lifting the Munster Senior Cup with their last success in the regional tournament coming in 2016 when they beat Rockmount at Turners Cross.

Rams legend John O’Flynn commented that Conor McDonald was ‘an outstanding manager’ as fans were jubilant back in East Cork.

Cobh have eleven games left in the league which they lead by eight points over 2nd placed Longford Town who they defeated 5-1 in their previous game. The Ford Cup also still awaits for Cobh with the First Round draw being made on the 23rd July.

Scott: Certainly relevant to where we are now, especially midway through the season. Limerick's morale must be very low by now, particularly after this cup final defeat.
Congrats mate, great win!
To be 23-years old and masterminding two cup wins is nothing short of remarkable! Conor can be very proud of himself, and Michael is going to have to cough up some more cash soon if he wants to keep him at the club
Limerick haven't a patch on Cobh and this proved it.

June turned out to be another one of Conor McDonald’s great periods in charge of Cobh Ramblers as he led his team to a 100% win record in the league meanwhile securing the second trophy of his tenure in the Munster Senior Cup.

The month began with a vital fixture against Longford Town in the league. At the time, Longford were 2nd place and five points behind the league leaders after an outstanding month in May. However, they were smashed 5-1 at City Calling Stadium as Cobh ran riot in front of an 880-strong crowd.

Harry Warwick, Will McGowan and Cian Leonard all got Cobh off to a stunning start with three goals in a five minute period between the 23rd and 28th minute. Jamie O’Hara then tucked away his fourth penalty of the season just after the half-time break.

Longford Town left-winger Adam Evans pegged a goal back to make it 4-1 but even this was cancelled as Cobh restored their four-goal lead with another Cian Leonard strike in the 65th minute to finish the game once and for all.

The hammerings continued midweek in the Munster Senior Cup as Cobh walked the cup final tie against Limerick in a 4-0 win at Turners Cross.

Harry Warwick got Cobh off to a flying start with a fifth minute goal, followed up quickly within twenty minutes by a Callum Jones brace.

Harry Warwick finished off the game in the 49th minute as he completed his own brace, leading to Conor McDonald’s second cup win as Cobh Ramblers boss.

A friendly match was arranged between Cobh Ramblers and Shamrock Rovers to plug the gap between the cup final and Cobh’s next league game. The friendly finished 2-2 with Harry Warwick and Louis Britton scoring for the Rams and Barry Maguire and Brandon Kavanagh scoring for Shamrock Rovers.

Cobh returned to league action against Galway United with a bang as they defeated Gary Cronin’s side 3-1 in a dominant display at Eamonn Deacy Park.

Callum Jones opened the scoring in the first ten minutes before Jamie Thornton popped up with an unexpected goal just after the half-time whistle. Galway’s Marc Ludden pegged Cobh back with less than half-an-hour to go but the game was settled as Callum Jones scored his eleventh goal of the season in the 85th minute.

A highly entertaining friendly was arranged against Longford Town after Cobh beat them 5-1 at their own ground earlier in the month. The game ended 7-4 with Callum Jones scoring four himself.

Cobh’s June display sets them nine points ahead of 2nd placed Shelbourne who finally hit form under Jon Daly despite doubts over his position earlier in the year about his suitability for the job at Tolka Park.

Largely as a result of their defeat at the hands of Cobh, Longford Town now find themselves in 3rd place and ten points off the league leaders. Limerick also have fallen down to 4th but with a healthy five-point gap between the final Play-Off spot and 5th placed Bray Wanderers who have struggled in the middle of the season.

Upcoming Fixtures:
Finn Harps (H) - League
Galway United (H) - Friendly
Limerick (A) - League
Bandon (H) - Friendly
Athlone Town (A) - League

Wolf: Thanks mate, really proud of the team!
James: It's a bright start in the career of a manager of any age but to be so young and hitting these heights is great! O'Donovan has Conor for another year after 2020 so who knows? :P
Scott: I think it's fair to say we are their bogey team.
Lovely buffer at the top of the table now, Conor better not bottle it! You're scoring a lot of goals, so I guess it's only a matter of time before Shelbourne comes knocking...
Cobh cruising this in.. I can sense an off-field manager drama coming up in the next two-three updates
Surely this has to be Conor's season with Cobh and hopefully wont be a bottle job and throwing it all away
Congrats on the trophy! Surely that nice gap lead in the league won’t falter, right?!?!
There doesn't seem to be any signs of faltering this season. This has to the year Cobh make a triumphant return to the top-flight!
Congrats on the Munster Cup a second piece of silverware in two years is great going for Conor. By the looks of things the double is on the cards this season as well, with a very nice gap between 1st and second.
Don't know if it's my screen but the green in your table is a bit difficult to see, don't know if i'm the only one with that problem. OT: Nice to see your picking up a small lead in the table!

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