LIMERICK 2 BOHEMIANS 1
A last-gasp header from David O’Leary gave 10-man Limerick a 2-1 win over Bohemians in Thomond park last night, writes ROBERT O’REARDON.
Ryan McEvoy had given the Gypsies the lead from the penalty spot on 56 minutes after Keith Buckley was fouled by Patrick Nzuzi, which also resulted in a red card for the left-back.
But it all turned sour five minutes later as Shane Treacy caught out Dean Delany at his near post with a free-kick before O’Leary pounced on another goalkeeping error to hand all three points to his side in stoppage time.
Aaron Callaghan’s side should have taken the lead right the beginning when Kevin Devaney was presented with a great opportunity after a mix-up in the Limerick defence between Aaron Brown and goalkeeper Barry Ryan. But the 22-year-old, who usually keeps his composure in front of goal, couldn’t do so this time.
Despite that setback, Bohs began to dominate the game and it was Shane Murray who was looking the most impressive in the centre of the park. A darting run and a superb ball to the back post from the Arklow man should have found Devaney but once again the former Finn Harps and Sligo player failed to convert as the ball just evaded him.
After a pretty uneventful first half, the game sprung into life in the second. Limerick began to get on the front foot and a powerful shot from Daniel Galbraith tested Dean Delany but the Bohs No 1 held on.
Then, Bohemians struck the first blow. A diagonal ball found its way to Buckley. The No 7 was getting ready to shoot when he was tumbled over from behind. Alan Kelly was left with no option to point to the spot and show Nzuzi a red card. McEvoy stepped up and side-footed the ball past Ryan in the Limerick goal.
Bohs seemed to be in the ascendancy but five minutes after taking the lead, Shane Treacy stepped up and fired a free-kick past Delany. It beat him at his near post; the ex-Shelbourne stopper really should have done better. After this, the home side began to take control, despite Callaghan introducing Dave Scully and Kevin O’Leary into the fold.
Limerick had numerous chances to win it before they finally sealed the deal as Bohs seemed to run out of ideas playing against 10 ten men. Brown wasted a golden opportunity after he fired wide from a Treacy cross but, against the run of play, Scully should have been the Bohs supersub when he found himself in on goal, but he blasted over the bar.
That was the last chance for the Gypsies as Treacy delivered a ball into the six-yard box. Delany opted to stay on his line and for the second time of the match, his poor positioning proved costly as David O’Leary was left with the easiest of headers to nod to back of the net as the home crowd erupted.
Limerick FC: Barry Ryan; Shaun Kelly, Aaron Brown, Stephen Folan, Patrick Nzuzi; Shane Tracy, Stephen Bradley, David O’Leary; Axel Bossekota (Rory Gaffney 66), Craig Curran, Danny Galbraith. Subs not used: Shane Cusack, Shane Costelloe, Val Feeney, Pat Purcell, Steven McGann, Darragh Rainsford.
Bohemians: Dean Delany; Michael Barker, Roberto Lopes, Derek Pender, Luke Byrne; Keith Buckley (Karl Moore 86), Dave Mulcahy, Ryan McEvoy, Shane Murray (Dave Scully 69) Ciaran Nangle; Kevin Devaney (Kevin O’Leary 78). Subs not used: Greg Murray, Conor O’Brien, Stephen Paisley, Dwayne Wilson.
Referee: Alan Kelly.