DROGHEDA UNITED 0 BOHEMIANS 1
Bohemians continue to upset the odds as they came away with all three points after a dramatic game at United Park that saw Derek Prendergast dismissed early on, a penalty save from Dean Delany and then an 87th-minute winning goal from Louth man Marc Griffin.
The game started off openly with both sides looking to attack. Adam Evans was causing the Drogheda rearguard problems on the left wing with a combination of some good tackling and bad touches stopping him making more of the opportunities.
Drogheda then looked to have Daryl Kavanagh through on goal from a long ball but Prendergast bundled Kavanagh over on the edge of the box with the resulting free amounting to nothing.
Soon after though there was the first of a few tough refereeing decisions. Kavanagh was again played through on the right and it appeared as though Lorcan Fitzgerald scythed him down.
Referee Paul McLaughlin, however, adjudged that Prendergast had made the tackle and consequently he was shown a second yellow card much to the fury of the away bench and travelling supporters.
Bohs didn’t let this set back curtail their attacking threat though as Keith Buckley attempted a half-volley from 40 yards out.
Right on half-time, Drogheda were awarded a penalty. A ball over the defence was controlled by Stephen Maher and Maher and Anto Murphy both went over in the box. To the disbelief of the Bohs players and the large Bohs contingent, the linesman flagged for a penalty. This was in spite of Maher appearing to control the ball with his hand initially and then falling over.
However, Delany brilliantly saved Kavanagh’s spot-kick, which was struck to his right and the sides went in level at the break.
Bohs grew into the game in the second half despite their numerical disadvantage. First Robbie Creevy went agonisingly close with a header and then Anto Murphy tried a Juan Mata-esque scissor kick but alas that was closer to troubling the graveyard behind the ground rather than Schlingermann in the Drogheda goal.
Soon after, Dean Kelly was played trough on the right and his goal bound effort was cleared off the line.
Drogheda then stepped up the pressure although without causing too many problems for the Bohs defence. This pressure almost paid off for Drogheda in the 86th minute. A ball into the box was punched clear by Delany but only to the edge of the box and Lee Duffy’s lob was cleared onto the crossbar by Fitzgerald and unbelievably Kavanagh blasted the rebound over the bar.
Straight after, Griffin – a league winner with Dundalk last season – sent the away end into pandemonium.
He was played through on the right and fired the ball past Schlingermann at his near hand post and sparked scenes of jubilation amongst the travelling Gypsies. After a few anxious minutes the final whistle went and Bohs secured the three points.
Next up for fourth-placed Bohs is the double visit of Longford Town to Dalymount Park next week. Keith Long’s side face The Town on Tuesday in the EA Sports Cup and then again on Friday in the league.