REPORT: HJK Helsinki 0-0 Cork City – U19s claim fantastic UEFA Youth League result
Cork City Under 19s recorded a historic 0-0 draw in Helsinki last Wednesday in the UEFA Youth League. Stephen Bermingham’s side will return to Turner’s Cross for the second leg on the 18th of October after dominating the tie but failing to score.
The Leesiders started the game well, with Captain Cian Coleman having his goal-bound shot well saved.
Minutes later, Cork City’s Garan Manley was brought off injured shortly after, suffering an ankle injury.
HJK Helsinki goalkeeper Robin Kallman never saw a dull moment, as Coleman forced a full length stretch to deny the Rebel Army’s low-struck shot on goal.
A barrage of chances came for the Rebel Army, as Alex Byrne’s shot went just wide and Conor McCarthy’s shot was turned away, closing out a dominant performance for the Leesiders just before half time.
From the restart City pressed forward. The visitor’s best chance came from Kevin Taylor’s excellent free-kick, bouncing off the crossbar and away to safety.
HJK pushed forward late on and created a number of chances, but City held out to bring it the tie back to the Cross.
On the result, Cork City under 19s Coach Stephen Bermingham was empathic: “It’s a fantastic result and we’re absolutely delighted with the performance. It’s great for the players and the club, but I think to come away to a strong side like Helsinki is a great signal for the entire league and under-age set-up in Ireland.”
Finishing up, the coach urged home support to come out and back the Rebel Army in the home leg, admitting that: “I think playing in front of a packed Turner’s Cross could almost be worth a goal for us, a huge help. We’re hopeful the support will come out and I’m sure the Helsinki team won’t quite know what to expect. It will be a huge advantage and we’re very much looking forward to it.”
HJK Helsinki: Kallman (GK), Bockerman, Olander, Halme, Vesiaho, Jama (C), Ylatupa, Lingman, Stavitski (Jalkanen 83), Hyokyvirta (Ulmanen 77) Kouassivi-Benissan (Malolo 66).
Subs: Mattila (GK), Malolo, Hieta, Salmi, Vertainen.
Yellow card(s): Stavitski.
Cork City: Coffey (GK), Taylor, Phillips, Manley (O’Sullivan 14), McCarthy, Coleman (C), Byrne, Drinan, Fernandes, Ogbene, O’Riordan (Welch 67).
Subs: Mylod (GK), Crowley, Leonard, O’Regan, Hurley.
Yellow card(s): McCarthy.