Cobh Ramblers and Cork City meet in the League this Friday. I look back at their first competitive meeting nearly 36 years ago on September 8th 1985.
The same week when prisoners rioted in Spike Island, the Titanic’s wreckage was located, “JR Ewing” visited Ireland and an ESB strike resulted in regular power cuts, Cork’s two newest League of Ireland representatives met head to head in the League Cup.
City elected to the Premier League the previous season travelled the short distance to Cobh’s St Colman’s Park to meet Ramblers who had joined the newly formed second tier.
A cloudy start broke in to sunny spells as referee Kevin O’Sullivan got the game underway.
Cobh’s start was impressive and a cross floated in by Michael O’Sullivan was only a touch away from Frank O’Neill scoring the East Cork side’s first League of Ireland goal.
However soon the more experienced City began to control the game. Charlie McCarthy had three great chances to open the scoring.
He glanced a header just wide, had a shot that ended up outside the post, then made Cobh Goalkeeper Paul Keating produce a reflex save.
The breakthrough for City came in the 27th minute when an unmarked Norman Fry headed a Jimmy Nodwell free kick past the Cobh goalkeeper to make it 1-0.
It was 2-0 shortly after half time. Five minutes into the second half City brought on substitute Billy O’Sullivan. Sixty seconds later Paddy Hughes put O’Sullivan down the wing. He then cut inside before curling a cross into the box that dropped over Keating in the Cobh goal and into the net.
City’s Liam Keane drilled a free kick that hit the upright but the game was to see no more goals.
The game described as “uncompromising” saw seven yellow cards issued. Four to Ramblers and Three to City.