Date Time League Season
19 November 2023 3:00 pm FAI Women's Cup 2023

Match Report

Women’s FAI Cup Final: Athlone Town v Shelbourne

Athlone Town lifted their first ever FAI Women’s Cup Final with a penalty shoot out victory after an exhilarating 2-2 draw with Shelbourne at Tallaght Stadium this afternoon.

Both sides led as the momentum of the game swayed between the finalists as Athlone gained revenge for their defeat to the same opposition last season.

The first opportunity arrived for Athlone with just three minutes on the clock. A corner wasn’t dealt with by Shelbourne as it bounced around a few bodies before Jessie Rossman got her toe to it but couldn’t direct it goalwards and the defending champions cleared their lines.

Maddie Gibson almost opened the scoring for the Midlanders as she found herself with the freedom of Tallaght. The inch perfect pass from Laurie Ryan found the American but she took her shot too early and didn’t bother Amanda McQuillan in the Shel’s goal.

Athlone would eventually make the breakthrough and it all stemmed from great work down the right hand side as Kellie Brennan won the ball and found Scheriff who played a glorious pass out wide to Roisin Molloy. The cross was deflected goalwards by the left leg of Maiggie Pierce and as the ball rebounded of the upright Dana Scheriff was on hand to tap in her easiest goal of the season.

The emotions on either side of the clash threatened to boil over as Shelbourne were lucky not to be reduced to 10 players when first Megan Smyth Lynch pushed Roisin Molloy in retaliation for a poor challenge and saw just a yellow card before Canadian Christie Gray challenged her former team mate Katie Keane with her left knee finding the face of the young keeper as she slid for the ball.

Smyth-Lynch would be withdrawn in tears before half time with an injury which finished her involvement in the game as the defending cup winners found themselves a goal down at the break.

Both sides continued to impress through the second half and Katie Keane was counting her blessings as she dropped one cross but Noelle Murray was unable to capitalise and her looping effort dropped onto the top of the net. 

Keane wouldn’t be so lucky quarter of an hour later when a routine catch once again found it’s way out of her grasp and Jemma Quinn made absolutely no mistake to level matters and sent the sizeable Shels contingent in the 3,526 strong crowd into raptures.

Maddie Gibson came close to restoring the lead on two occasions with two powerful efforts from just outside the box. The first clattered off the top of the crossbar with McQuillan beaten and moments later her attempt from almost the exact same spot went just past the near post as the Shels stopper appeared to have her angles covered.

Quinn would have one more attempt before the end of the second half. A great touch from a long ball saw her control the ball on the edge of the Athlone box. She found her range but an excellent full length dive from Keane saw the ball pushed out to safety.

Quinn would provide the breakthrough approaching half time in extra time when Pearl Slattery sneaked into the box and was beautifully picked out by Noelle Murray. Slattery laid the ball back to Quinn who picked her spot and found the net. Quinn’s celebration evoked memories of Brandi Chastain’s shirtless celebration after the USA’s maiden World Cup in 1999.

Her delight was short lived though as Athlone Town substitute Gillian Keenan got on the end of a Muireann Devaney centre with three minutes left on the clock. She duly dispatched the ball to the back of the net and it would take penalties to decide the destination of the cup.

Although Maddie Gibson saw her initial effort rebound to safety, two misses from Amanda McQuillan and Alex Kavanagh would send the Midlanders into raptures as they secured their first ever FAI Women’s Cup Final.


20Amanda McQuillan Goalkeeper 80'
2Keeva Keenan Defender
4Pearl Slattery Defender
5Leah Doyle 13 Defender
6Alex Kavanagh Midfielder
8Rachel Graham Defender
10Noelle Murray Forward
11Megan Smyth-Lynch 16 Forward 34'
15Hannah Healy Midfielder
22Maggie Pierce Midfielder
23Christie Gray Forward 39'
1Courtney Maguire Goalkeeper
9Jemma Quinn Forward 75', 101'
12Nadine Clare Midfielder
13Rebecca Devereux 5 Forward
16Kerri Letmon 11 Forward
17Taylor White Forward
18Leah Riley Midfielder
33Morgan Rees Forward
34Catherine Gravensen Defender

Athlone Town

16Katie Keane Goalkeeper
3Kayleigh Shine Defender
4Shauna Brennan 18 Defender 54'
5Jesi Rossman Defender
8Dana Scheriff Forward 33'
9Chloe Singleton Midfielder
10Kellie Brennan Forward
11Laurie Ryan 23 Midfielder
12Lauren Karabin 6 Forward
14Roisin Molloy 7 Midfielder
17Maddison Gibson Midfielder
30Katherine Hess Goalkeeper
6Muireann Devaney 12 Midfielder
7Gillian Keenan 14 Forward 116'
15Lucy Jayne Grant Forward
18Kate Slevin 4 Midfielder
20Carly Wetzel Midfielder
23Isabel Ryan 11 Forward
24Antea Guvo Defender
25Mary Philips Midfielder
  • 120'

    Jessie Rossman scores for Athlone Town and Alex Kavanagh hits the cross bar as Tallaght Stadium erupts in a sea of blue and black.

  • 120'

    Kayleigh Shine sends her effort in off the underside of the bar as Rebecca Deveraux cancels out her effort. It's effectively sudden death now.

  • 120'

    Chloe Singleton and Hannah Healy swap scores 2-2 after 3.

  • 120'

    Amazingly Amanda McQuillan steps and her effort goes over the bar.

  • 120'

    Dana Scherrif finds the top corner to level matters.

  • 120'

    Pearl Slattery put's Shels ahead.

  • 120'

    It's 2-2 and we have penalties here in Tallaght. First up Athlone's Maddie Gibson who sees her effort come back of the crossbar.

  • 90'

    Normal time ends in a stalemate and we have 30 more minutes to separate these two teams.

  • 74'

    An we're level. Shelbourne have found an equaliser. Katie Keane flaps at a cross and the ball drops to substitute Gemma Quinn who taps past her former team mate.

  • 46'

    Both sides are back on the pitch and Shelbourne get us underway for the second half.

  • 45'

    HALF TIME: Athlone Town 1-0 Shelbourne

  • 45'

    Megan Smyth-Lynch has been having trouble with an injury and she's replaced in first half injury time by Kerri Letmon as Smyth-Lynch leaves the field in tears.

  • 41'

    Two Shels players very lucky to remain on the pitch as first Megan Smyth Lynch is booked for retaliating with a push on Roisin Molloy before Christie Gray is particularly lucky not to see red for a reckless challenge on Katie Keane. The Canadian's sliding challenge see her left knee catch the face of the young Athlone goalkeeper.

  • 33'

    Athlone take the lead through Dana Scheriff as she taps in from close range. A thundering headed challenge from Kellie Brennan had released Roisin Molloy. The Sligo native's cross sliced off the foot of Shel's defender Maggie Pierce and came back off the post giving the League's top scorer the easiest finish off the season.

  • 25'

    Shels have the best chance of the game. Hannah Healy picks the pocket of Shauna Brennan and finds Noelle Murray but Rossman produces an amazing block to keep the goal intact.

  • 22'

    Chloe Singleton has the latest opportunity for the midlanders as her cross gets blocked. She gets a second attempt but Maggie Pierce smothers the opportunity near the Shel's penalty spot. Athlone are looking the brightest so far, but it's been a cracking end to end game so far.

  • 21'

    Maddie Gibson again in full flight as she breaks onto Scheriff's header and bursts down the right wing this time. Her centre almost finds her collegiate teammate Scheriff but it just evades her.

  • 18'

    Laurie Ryan finds Maddie Gibson in space on the left wing. Her first touch sets up a clear shooting opportunity but she might not have realised how much time and space she had as her effort from the edge of the box is easily gathered by McQuillan in the Shel's goal.

  • 16'

    Alex Kavanagh is showing her class at every opportunity as she picks the pocket of her Athlone opponents a number of times in a super busy midfield area.

  • 12'

    Match referee Marc Lynch decides he wants to get involved in the play as he gets his feet tied up and intercepts a flowing Shels move much to the annoyance of Megan Smyth Lynch who was flying through the Athlone rearguard.

  • 3'

    Shelbourne survive a scare as a crossed ball from a corner bounces off a few Athlone legs before Jessie Rossman gets a toe to it. The defender can\'t get her effort on target and the Red\'s clear the danger, just!

  • 1'

    And we're underway, Athlone have the first attack with ROisin Molloy finding Chloe Singleton but her cross is cleared. Both teams are looking busy here.

  • Anthem is done, the dignitaries have returned to their seats and the players are going through their final motions ahead of what promises to be an exciting 90 minutes action.

  • The music is blaring, the crowd are on their feet and the teams are making their way out to be greeted by our President Michael D Higgins as we get ready for a repeat of last season's showpiece final. Shels emerged 2-0 last year, will a resurgent Athlone Town get their revenge this time around.

Past Meetings

(Round 16)
2 - 1
LOI Women's Premier Division
Tolka Park

Shelbourne FC v Athlone Town AFC

(Round 1)
1 - 4
Avenir Sports All-Island Cup
Athlone Town Stadium

Athlone Town AFC 1-4 Shelbourne FC

(Round 9)
0 - 1
LOI Women's Premier Division
Athlone Town Stadium

Athlone Town AFC 0-1 Shelbourne FC

(Women's Final)
*2 - 2
President's Cup
Athlone Town Stadium

Athlone Town v Shelbourne

0 - 2
FAI Women's Cup
Tallaght Stadium

Athlone Town v Shelbourne

(Round 23)
2 - 0
LOI Women's Premier Division
Athlone Town Stadium

Athlone Town 2-0 Shelbourne

(Round 17)
1 - 1
LOI Women's Premier Division
Tolka Park

Shelbourne 1-1 Athlone Town

(Round 3)
0 - 2
LOI Women's Premier Division
Athlone Town Stadium

Athlone Town v Shelbourne

(Series 25)
1 - 1
LOI Men's First Division
Tolka Park

Shelbourne v Athlone Town

(Series 19)
4 - 0
LOI Women's Premier Division
Tolka Park

Shelbourne v Athlone Town

(Series 16)
1 - 3
LOI Men's First Division
Athlone Town Stadium

Athlone Town v Shelbourne

(Series 10)
5 - 0
LOI Women's Premier Division
Tolka Park

Shelbourne v Athlone Town

(Series 7)
1 - 0
LOI Men's First Division
Tolka Park

Shelbourne v Athlone Town

(Series 1)
0 - 2
LOI Women's Premier Division
Athlone Town Stadium

Athlone Town v Shelbourne

(Quarter Final)
4 - 1
Athlone Town Stadium

Athlone Town v Shelbourne

(Series 4)
0 - 3
LOI Women's Premier Division
Athlone Town Stadium

Athlone Town v Shelbourne


Tallaght Stadium
Tallaght Stadium, Whitestown Way, Tallaght, Dublin 24, D24 XC9W

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