BOHEMIANS 2-1 DROGHEDA UTD
Bohemians waited until July to secure their first league win at Dalymount Park but have now won two at home on the trot in the Premier Division after securing a deserved triumph over Drogheda on Friday evening, writes CONOR HAYES.
Karl Moore was the hero in an eventful game as he grabbed the first early on and set up Jason Byrne for the winner in the second half. Both sides finished the game a man down as Steven Beattie and Gavin Brennan were given their marching orders for a tussle off the ball.
The home side made three changes from the team that drew with UCD last week with Karl Moore, Jason Byrne and Dave Mulcahy coming in. Beattie deputised for the injured Anto Murphy at full-back.
The game began quietly with the ever busy Gary O’Neill having the first shot on goal for the away side but it flew over. Bohemians were looking every bit the side who had not scored in their last three games but just before the fifteenth minute they produced a wonderfully worked goal.
A nice ball out of defence by Dan Byrne found its way to Dinny Corcoran in the centre circle who played an inviting through ball past the retreating Drogheda defenders and into the path of Karl Moore. Jason Byrne was calling for it at the far post but the winger had only eyes for goal as he powered it past Michael Schlingermann and to the roof of the net.
After being the provider, Corcoran then set about getting on the scoresheet himself and came agonisingly close on two occasions. First, a Mulcahy pass saw the former UCD man hit a lovely turning volley which beat the keeper but cannoned off the crossbar. Next, a whipped corner from Moore found the striker lurking in the six yard box but his header could only find the frame of the goal.
Bohs would then miss another glorious chance to double their lead a minute into the second half. Some trickery on the right wing saw Kevin Devaney charge into the box, his powerful cross could only be parried by Schlingermann into the path of Moore whose scuffed shot came towards Byrne diving forward with his head not more than two yards from the line. Many in the Jodi Stand were celebrating only to see the Drogheda keeper emerge with the ball in his hands.
The men in red and black then seemed to lose their initiative and United playing in all white seemed to sense their oppostion’s nervousness and looked to take advantage. They did just that after forcing a corner shortly after the hour mark. Gavin Holohan’s ball was punched away but directly into the path of Brennan who coolly finished inside the box.
It seemed that Bohs were doomed to repeat the same story at Dalymount that they have endured all season with missed opportunities in front of goal costing them valuable points. However, Moore wasn’t done for the evening and less than five minutes later the Gypsies would regain the lead.
Dan Byrne brought the ball out from defence and attempted to play in the wide man charging down the left, the pass was slightly over hit and Alan McNally seemed favourite to clear but Moore’s desire won the day as he emerged with the ball after a wonderfully timed tackle. He then had the presence of mind to pick out Jason Byrne at the back post. It’s been a long goal drought for the former Cardiff forward but he reminded us all why he’s one of the best strikers to ever grace our league as he thundered his shot into the far corner.
The game had not been a particularly truculent affair but with seventeen minutes remaining something spilled over between Beattie and Brennan on the right touchline. The Drogheda man went down clutching his face after it appeared the makeshift right back had raised his hands.
Anthony Buttimer’s eyes had been on play but his fourth official had clearly seen the full incident and advised the referee to dish out a red card apiece. The two offenders verbally continued their row as they exited the field and both managers will be furious over losing two valuable players to a long suspension for such indiscipline.
The sending off seemed to disrupt the visitor’s rhythm more than Bohemians’ and while there were a few nervous moments in the penalty area as the game entered its final moments, Byrne’s goal proved to be the decisive one.
So after three games without a win and a goal, Bohs return to form just in time for Monday, when they entertain Shamrock Rovers in Phibsboro for the second time in a fortnight.
Bohemians: Dean Delany; Steven Beattie, Dan Byrne, Aidan Price, Derek Pender; Kevin Devaney (Keith Buckley 90+1), Roberto Lopes, Dave Mulcahy, Karl Moore; Dinny Corcoran (Adam Evans 85), Jason Byrne (Ryan McEvoy 78). Subs Not Used: Aaron Shanahan (GK), Jack Memery, Jake Hyland, Craig Walsh.
Drogheda United: Micheal Schlingermann; Daire Doyle, Alan McNally, Ciaran McGuigan, Shane Grimes; Peter McGlynn; Cathal Brady (Declan O’Brien 72), Gavan Holohan, Gavin Brennan, Carl Walshe (Gareth Brady 85); Gary O’Neill. Subs Not Used: Paul Andrews, Paul Crowley, Sean O’ Connor, Roy Kireans, Dylan Connolly.
Referee: Anthony Buttimer (Cork)
Mr Green Man of the Match: Karl Moore