U17 Match Report – Drogheda United 4 Bray Wanderers 2

Drogheda United 4 Bray Wanderers 2

In a game that had many twists and turns, Bray suffered a disappointing 4-2 away loss to Drogheda in their second EA Sports U17 LOI Group A outing of the season.

Wanderers twice lead in the opening period at the MDL Grounds in Navan on Sunday afternoononly only to be pegged back on each occasion by Drogheda.

A missed penalty by the away team at 2-2 in the second half proved crucial as United went on to run out 4-2 winners.

After a narrow 1-0 home loss to Shelbourne last week in their first game of the 2024 campaign, the Wicklow side took a tenth minute lead.

A sweeping move found Sean Hennelly out wide right. His cross was finished off by Billy O’Neill.

But that lead didn’t last long. United equalised from a 14th minute corner with Daniel Bello heading in.

But the Seagulls regained the advantage just before the half hour mark as Irish U16 striker O’Neill found the net again after good link up play with Rhys Knight.

The visitors created a number of other chances after that. But were hit with a sucker punch just before half time with Drogheda equalising again through Cian Wilson.

The Green and White’s started the second period brightly. And had the opportunity to go ahead for the third time in the 55th minute.

O’Neill was taken down in the box. After a lengthy delay, Phil Cooney stepped up but his spot-kick was saved by home goalkeeper Theo Hennessy.

To compound matters, Drogheda went up the opposite end of the pitch and scored through Bello in the 59th minute.

The Louth outfit went on to seal the points in the 73rd minute when Sean McGrath was on the mark.

Bray Wanderers: Alex Forde; Conor Lougheed, Jack Nolan, Ronan Dawson, Luke Smith; Alain Kizenga, Ethan Cheese, Sean Hennelly, Rhys Knight, Phillip Cooney; Billy O’Neill.

Subs: Max Free, Kian Dowling, Bailey Shelley, Flynn Ryan, Cristiano Bramley, Aidan Kane, Ryan Owens, Eric Schutte, David Winkler.

Pictures: Ethan Finnerty.

* Bray are idle next week. They are provisionally scheduled to host Derry City on Sunday March 17.