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Thread: Monaghan United beat St Catherines

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    Capped Player A face's Avatar
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    Exclamation Monaghan United beat St Catherines

    Monaghan United beat St Catherines at Dublin Bus Grounds in Clondalkin today. It finished up 5:2 in the Inter Shield Final with Charlene Graham getting a hat trick and Orla Callen with two more for Monaghan United.
    Last edited by A face; 10/09/2006 at 4:17 PM.
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    New Signing Magicme's Avatar
    Dec 2005
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    Thanks for that A Face!!!

    It was with delight but not astonishment that Monaghan United FC, and anyone who has watched our Women’s team play this season, greeted the news early last week that Charlene Graham had been summonsed to the City West Hotel in Dublin to take part in the Republic of Ireland Senior Women’s team training sessions. Charlene has been an outstanding player on the fledgling Monaghan United Women’s team & has been the talk of footballing circles in the area since she joined the squad when it was formed last October. The young Monaghan lady has shown talent and commitment throughout the pre-season and the season and has gained many fans along the way.

    Down to earth & determined, Charlene set about playing with the Monaghan United Ladies with an attitude that enhances her natural ability. Republic of Ireland Manager Noel King commented this week that Ms Graham “was a raw talent with the right attitude” and he was delighted to have her training with his Senior Women’s team. When Charlene went to the City West to meet the International Squad she was made feel right at home straight off with the help of Drogheda United player Grainne Kerins. Grainne took Charlene under her wing and commented to Charlene that she was “glad to be playing with you and not against you” as these players have met on opposing teams over the past season.

    Monaghan United Women’s coach Chris McBride accompanied Charlene to the sessions to help her feel more at ease and Noel King had nothing but praise to report back to Chris. Following the training sessions on Thursday and Friday, Charlene’s efforts were rewarded when she was told that she would be on the Ireland Squad for the next day’s International Friendly against Italy. It was an outstanding achievement for a young lady who had never played competitive soccer until she joined the Monaghan United squad less than a year ago. Charlene lined out with her team mates in the green of Ireland but Noel King, being mindful of Charlene’s Monaghan United commitments in the Shield Final the following day, choose not to play her. Even though she didn’t get to play in the game, Charlene was grateful for the experience of lining out with the International team in Richmond Park and if the rumours are true, it looks like she will be called upon to serve her country again in the not too distant future.

    Congratulations Charlene, you are an inspiration to all women playing football in the County and a credit to your family and club.

    Last October when Monaghan United started recruiting women to play football, it was hoped that enough talented players would present themselves and that training sessions would run and friendlies would be played with the view of joining the Dublin Women’s League. Shortly after the training sessions began, it became clear to the Manager Liam McCarey and Coach Chris McBride that they had a very talented bunch of footballers on their hands. Very few of them had played soccer before and after some difficult days of learning the rules and remembering not to catch the ball unless you were a goalie, the women soon began to find their feet. They played some friendlies against some great footballing sides such as Linfield from Belfast and Northland Raiders from Newtownards and learned a lot from these matches in preparation for the start of the Dublin League in May. United were assigned to the Dublin 4 Inter League North for their first season in football and soon set about dismantling a few teams in this league. Due to a few hiccups along the way, they had to settle for 3 place in this league but had been in with a shout of winning the league right up until the crunch final 2 games. The league may not have gone according to this ambitious team’s plans but they certainly got their way when it came to the Dublin League Intermediate Shield Competition. The Esprit sponsored team eliminated Rush Athletic and Trim Celtic on their way to the final which took place in Dublin on Sunday last.

    United were quietly confident that they could give St Catherine’s a good game having beaten them in a 4-3 in a pre-season friendly. The game started off as a dull affair with neither team playing much football and United were lacking the flair that their fans have become used to. That said, Orla Callen managed to put the Mons in front early in the first half. St Catherine’s came back to equalise but United were not finished scoring goals. Charlene Graham put Monaghan 2-1 up before the half time whistle but the game was still lacking some of the sparkle it needed.

    Whatever Manager Liam McCarey said at half time worked wonders as a rejuvenated and dazzling football display awaited the supporters when the game resumed. Orla Callen notched up her second goal of the game but Charlene Graham cost her coach a new pair of football boots when she scored twice more to win a hattrick. St Catherine’s had not let too much air get between them and the Monaghan side when they had pulled back a goal at one point to make the scoreline 3-2 but Monaghan’s ladies were not to be done out of the prize. A fantastic team performance ensured that Monaghan lifted the shield and brought home their first piece of silverware well before their 1st Birthday as a team. Apart from the goal scorers, Aisling Smith, Mary Croakin and goalie Deirdre McAteer deserve special mention for their top notch performances.

    Understandably, the team, management and Monaghan United were thrilled with Sunday’s victory & a party ensued in the Clubhouse on their return to Monaghan. Congratulations to all involved, Monaghan United ladies have certainly but women’s football on the map in this neck of the woods!

    With the league season at an end and just the Leinster Cup competition on the horizon it was decided that the party after the win against St Catheine’s would be the opportune moment to present the Player of the Year Awards. The Young Player of the Year award, sponsored by Monaghan United Juvenile Section, was won by Clones youngster Michaela Newell, the Top Goal Scorer of the Year award, sponsored by Creevy Pier Hotel, Ballyshannon, Co. Donegal, was won by Charlene Graham and the Player of the Year award, sponsored by The Northern Standard, was jointly won by Charlene Graham and Aisling Smyth.

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