London registered a sweet two-point victory in their last Allianz Football League Division Four game against Wicklow in Baltinglass.
The Exiles were full value for their win having looked the better team for large periods of this clash. Paul Coggins' side had the wherewithal and passion to recover from going 0-10 to 0-6 down early in the second half.
Key to their victory were the two second half goals they scored against the Garden County. The first came after Lorcan Mulvey caught a long ball above Wicklow corner-back Paul Cunningham and fed Martin Carroll and the midfielder rattled the back of Andrew Murphy’s net.
Two minutes later, a long ball from Mark Gottsche found Alan O’Hara, and the nifty corner-forward stuck the ball into the corner of the Wicklow net.
London had started the game the better and had led by 0-4 to 0-2 after 20 minutes - Scott Conroy with two lovely frees, a Padraig McGoldrick point, and a crisp effort from Alan O’Hara from a tight angle, putting them ahead of John McGrath’s two pointed frees for Wicklow.
Wicklow recovered well and went in leading 0-5 to 0-4. The Garden County emerged the sharper and pushed out to the 0-10 to 0-6 lead with London’s points coming from a superb strike from the sideline from Alan O’Hara and a Lorcan Mulvey free.
O’Hara then reduced the arrears to three points after the London tactic of high ball in on top of Mulvey started to pay off.
London hung on in there and never stopped fighting for every ball and when they bagged the two goals they defended in resolute fashion. Following the majors London never really looked like losing and they sealed the deal when Mark Gottsche pointed a wonderful free off the ground from 55 yards out in the 71st minute.
Wicklow had time to go in search of a goal, but London claimed the points. There are serious questions for Johnny Magee to answer as he prepares for the daunting Leinster Championship challenge of Meath in Navan, but this was an uplifting win for London and their small following in Baltinglass.
Scorers for London: A O’Hara 1-3, M Carroll 1-0, S Conroy 0-2 (2fs), P McGoldrick 0-1, L Mulvey 0-1 (f), M Gottsche 0-1 (f).
Scorers for Wicklow: J McGrath 0-6 (5fs, 1 45); A McLoughlin 0-1, D Healy 0-1, P Cronin 0-1, T Kelly 0-1, D Hayden 0-1, M Mangan 0-1.
London: D Traynor; P Butler, P Galvin, D McCreevy; C Carty, C Og Greene, D McCarthy; M Gottsche, M Carroll; S Conroy, B Collins, B Smith; A O’Hara, L Mulvey, P McGoldrick. Subs: S Finn for Conroy (33 mins), P O’Shea for McGoldrick (46 mins), B Kavanagh for Traynor (50 mins).
Wicklow: A Murphy; P Cunningham, A McLoughlin, B Kennedy; C Murphy, P McLoughlin, K Murphy; D Woods, D Healy; M Kenny, S Kelly, D Hayden; P Cronin, T Kelly, J McGrath. Subs: R O’Brien for Woods (30 mins), P McWalter for Kenny (48 mins), M Mangan for K Murphy (55 mins), P Byrne for T Kelly (60 mins), C Ffrench for Hayden (62 mins).
Referee: G McCormack (Dublin).