RESILIENT Limerick began a hectic week with a precious 1-0 Airtricity League home win over gritty Longford Town at Jackman Park on Friday night.
A moment of individual brilliance from Jeffrey Judge five minutes into the second half helped the Super Blues claim all three points on offer and ensure Pat Scully’s men remain in touch with early season First Division leaders Shels’.
Twenty two-year-old Judge raced onto Peter Hynes’ well-placed knock down 25 yards from goal and showed terrific composure to wrong foot a retreating defender before coolly slipping the ball past Town ‘keeper Alvin Rouse.
The victory- secured before 574 paying customers- was no more than Limerick deserved for their lively second half showing. Indeed, the home side was decidedly unfortunate not to record a more comfortable success.
Shane Tracy had a 63rd minute effort ruled out for off-side much to the frustration of the Limerick supporters. The decision was a very tight call.
While Friday night’s League clash with high-flying Shelbourne is a major early-season test for Scully’s young side, the manager says they will be determined to do well in tonight EA Sports League Cup tie with the Kerry League.
“You are likely to see a few changes for the game with the Kerry League, but not wholesale. We are taking the competition seriously,” Pat Scully said.
“We have a squad of 24 players and they can all play. There are a few young lads in there- Stephen McGann is only 16- but they are all more than capable of playing.
We will change it on Monday, but nothing too severe.
“We want to do well in competitions like the Munster Senior Cup, the League Cup and the FAI Cup as well as the League itself.
You need to have a good squad and players available. We are one or two short of having the full panel. We will need everybody.”
Scully was delighted with the overall performance against Longford Town and the clinical finish from former Fairview Rangers player Jeffrey Judge.
Pat Scully said: “Jeffrey’s (Judge’s) goal was fantastic.
“We did a lot of work with Jeffrey this season because his energy levels and his running power are fantastic.
“I thought Peter’s (Hynes) movement for the goal was great, to peel away from the centre half and open that gap up for Jeffrey to make that run.
“He finished it brilliantly. I am delighted. It was a really, really good goal.
“When you look at the quality we have, in games that are tight like that, we need to keep our discipline and professionalism and I think we have the quality with the players we have to get goals.
“Longford made it difficult for us playing five across the middle.
It was difficult to get our passing going and to get the ball into Paudie (Quinn).
But I felt we were much better today. I though the performance was much more like us.
“Our work rate was better, our determination was better and against the good teams who are going to come here, there are going to be games where we are going to have to be really solid.
We never looked like conceding a goal, I felt. We were very good at the back, defensively very, very strong. Maybe we could have had another goal in the second half.