Fair Play trophy is just reward for Co Armagh Milk Cup efforts

Co Armagh Junior player Alberto Balde receives the David McClarty Fair Play Award from Mark McIntosh as Dean McCullough looks on.
Co Armagh Junior player Alberto Balde receives the David McClarty Fair Play Award from Mark McIntosh as Dean McCullough looks on.
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The Co Armagh Junior squad did not return from the North West empty handed after winning the Fair Play Award following yet another highly successful Dale Farm Milk Cup.

It was a fitting reward for their disciplined performances during the week which also saw the Premier side reach the Vase final.

Dean McCullough, chairman of the Co Armagh Milk Cup , said he was proud of all the boys for the way they embraced the tournament.

“The boys were magnificent,” said Dean. “They were a great bunch of lads and in all the games they kept their discipline and just focused on playing football and it is nice to see that recognised with the Fair Play award.

“The Junior side made a great start by beating Swindon, then just dipped their performance levels to lose the next game against Co Tyrone but produced a brilliant team effort to hold Right to Dream to a scoreless draw.

“We could not have gone into the match with the aim to try and beatRight to Dream so we made sure we had a plan which made it difficult for them to play and it worked. It showed the boys that you have to use tactics and adapt to the kind of opposition you are up against.

“The next game ended with a penalty kick shoot-out and the boys were down after going out 5-4 to GPS Bayern. It was hard to lift them after that and that showed in the final game which we lost 2-0 to North Dublin.

“The Premier side started off we a tough, close game against Real Sociedad which they lost 1-0, but came back well to beat Alset Colombia 2-1 with two late goals.

“We then beat Otago Academy 2-0 which put us up against Motherwell in the semi-final of the Vase. After a scoreless 90 minutes it was down to penalties again but this time we got through after goalkeeper Matthew Leyburn saved and Conor Murtagh score to make it 5-4.

“That put us up against favourites Right to Dream in the final and although the boys did well to get back level at 1-1 at half-time two quick goals after the break put Right to Dream in the driving seat and they never looked back going on to win 6-1.

“However, the Ghanaian side were a class act and it was always going to be toughto stay with them.

“Overall it has been a very good week for everyone and it is now up to the boys to take all these experiences both high and low back to their clubs and learn from it.”