|24 June 2022||7:45 pm||First Division||2022|
Danny Searle's reign as new Waterford manager got off to a positive start as the Blues cruised to a 1-0 win over Bray at the RSC this evening.
Louis Britton's 52nd minute strike was the difference, the on-loan striker getting on the end of an excellent Roland Idowu cross to strike at the far post and grab his fourth goal in three games against Bray.
Waterford were by far the slicker side throughout although they failed to convert a number of chances which would have seen them come away with a bigger lead in what was their seventh consecutive win. Wanderers struggled to threaten over the course of the 90 minutes, with set-piece chances not proving enough for the visitors.
Waterford looked slick when passing the ball out of defence but struggled to find Louis Britton up front in the game's early stages.
Perhaps a consequence of having gone a month without a competitive fixture, the Blues lacked precision with the final ball and good moves forward were let down by that inaccuracy.
Bray relied on set-pieces to threaten and won a several corners up the field from counter-attacks, but, like their opponents, they could not create anything close to a decent chance.
Waterford began to get the upper hand on proceedings after the ten minute mark as they found those vital passes up front and opportunities came.
A Phoenix Patterson cross from the left found Louis Britton in front of the Bray goal but the on-loan hitman was off-balance and hit his effort well over on 12 minutes.
Bray keeper Stephen McGuinness did well to snuff out chances which saw Junior Quitirna and then Patterson charge down on goal as the Blues' momentum continued.
Patterson was a menace to the Wanderers' defence and his shot off his left on 20 minutes slid just over the crossbar to keep things level.
Richard Taylor and then Quitirna had chances from corners but couldn't find the target as the home sides' opportunities began to pile up as heavy rain poured down at the RSC.
McGuinness again kept things level on 35 minutes when Junior hit a powerful effort from outside the box.
At the end of two minutes additional time, Waterford appeared to have finally made the breakthrough when Taylor nodded down to Britton, who smashed it home only for the duo to be called offside, leaving the sides level at the break.
The teams had an extended rest due to a floodlight problem at the RSC which was resolved after some 25 minutes.
Bray won a free-kick in front of goal within the opening moments and came very close to scoring as Conor Clifford's low effort was deflected just around the post for a corner.
That was as good as it would get for the visitors though, as Waterford stepped up a gear from then on and took the lead before long.
Roland Idowu found himself with plenty of space on the right wing to deliver an excellent cross to Britton in the Bray box for Waterford to take the lead.
Numerous chances followed for the Blues through Britton, Junior and Patterson but, although they outclassed their opposition. they could not find another goal.
|Regional Sports Centre|
|Waterford Regional Sports Centre, Inner Ring Road, Kilbarry, Waterford, County Waterford, Munster, X91 KT29, Ireland|