Match report: Bohemians 0 St Patrick’s Athletic 1

Bohemians are still in search of their first victory of the season after going down 1-0 in their first Dublin derby of the season on Saturday.

Ronan Coughlan’s second half header was enough to take all three points in a very tight and competitive game at a sun-soaked Dalymount Park.

The Gypsies, who did the double last season against St Pat’s and were on an impressive nine-game undefeated streak against the visitors, made two changes to the team that let slip a two-goal lead to Longford Town the week previous.

In came Andy Lyons and Dawson Devoy, who were away last week with the Ireland U21s, replacing Keith Ward and Rory Feely.

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Although there was little between the sides, and as a fascinating clash of styles unfolded, 4-2-3-1 for the hosts versus a fluid 3-5-2 for the visitors, it was Bohs who created the first two half-chances.

The first came from a bit of pinball in the Pat’s area from a whipped Anto Breslin corner. But as the ball fell invitingly for Ross Tierney, the youngster just couldn’t make contact as he swung and the ball trickled into the arms of the on-loan Liverpool goalkeeper Vitezslav Jaros.

Bohs’ best avenue of a breakthrough looked to be from Liam Burt who looked a threat throughout, and was finding some good space on the left wing. He was slipped in behind the Saints backline from an Andy Lyons through ball.

The pacey Scotsman showed good feet to cut inside and smash a low drive through a cluster of legs that was well blocked and eventually scrambled wide for a corner kick.

Stephen O’Donnell’s St Pat’s have started the season well with an encouraging draw away at champions Shamrock Rovers, followed by an injury-time victory against Drogheda United, and they really should have broken the deadlock midway through the first half.

Some sloppy play at the back saw Rob Cornwall dispossessed on the edge of his own area but Robbie Benson, under pressure from the recovering Cornwall, dragged his effort just wide of Talbot’s far post.

St Pat’s began to dominate possession, with Coughlan and Mattie Smith looking a threat in behind and clever movement.

With little goalmouth threat as the hosts held their shape well, the Saints came armed with some clever corner routines, which could have paid dividends before the break but Lee Desmond was unable to direct his powerful header goalwards.

The second half started very much a case of copy and paste of the first, as both teams failed to wear each other down with the Inchicore side building well from the back.

Cornwall had a very good chance to give Bohs the lead with a free header at the back post, from another good Breslin delivery.

It took until just after the hour mark for one of the visitors’ smart set pieces to pay off, as Coughlan rose highest from Benson’s inswinging corner to power a header home past the helpless Talbot, who could only push the ball into the roof of the net. That’s two in two now for the ex-Sligo Rovers man.

Bohs finally sprung to life as the urgency in their play increased greatly, but they struggled to carve out that one clear-cut equalising opportunity, with Jaros making just one save throughout the 90 minutes.

The impressive visitors, with a midfield trio of Chris Forrester, Jamie Lennon and Benson just had too much guile and graft about them and saw out the game in excellent fashion to keep their unbeaten start to the season intact. The final whistle was met with a huge roar of relief from the travelling party as they find themselves joint top of the league

Bohs were left frustrated with their new-look attack still finding their feet. Up next is a trip to Oriel Park on Friday to face Dundalk.

Bohemians: James Talbot, Andy Lyons, Rob Cornwall, James Finnerty, Anto Breslin, Keith Buckley (c) (Thomas Oluwa 82), Ali Coote, Liam Burt, Dawson Devoy (Keith Ward 68), Ross Tierney, Georgie Kelly. Unused substitutes: Stephen McGuinness, Rory Feely, Ciaran Kelly, Bradley Rolt, Tyreke Wilson, Bastien Hery, Jack Moylan.
St Patrick’s Athletic: Vitezslav Jaros, John Mountney, Sam Bone, Lee Desmond, Ian Bermingham, Jamie Lennon, Chris Forrester, Robbie Benson, Darragh Burns (Paddy Barrett 73), Mattie Smith (Jason McClelland 88), Ronan Coughlan (Billy King 78). Unused substitutes: Barry Murphy, Josh Keeley, Kian Corbally, Ben McCormack, Alfie Lewis, Nehum Melvin-Lambert.
Referee: Neil Doyle

Match report: Galway United 3 Bohemians 1

Bohemians travelled to Eamonn Deacy Park looking to build on last week’s opening day win at home to Treaty United.

But Bohs didn’t really get going in the first half and were lucky not to be behind early on before the home side eventually opened the scoring on the half-hour mark through Rachel Kearns.

The goal came following a collision, although the striker appeared to push defender Jade Reddy into the onrushing goalkeeper Niamh Coombes as she came out to the ball, which left Kearns to tap home into an empty net.

Five minutes later, it was 2-0 to the home side. Captain Shauna Fox launched a clearance towards the Bohs backline who failed to deal with the ball, which left Kearns to chase the ball down with Coombes.

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Coombes won out initially, but the ball fell to Kate Slevin who shot first time into an empty net.

Bohs did well to get to the interval only two down. Manager Sean Byrne made four changes at the break, as he looked to bring a better performance in the second half.

But it went from bad to worse on the hour mark as Shauna Brennan’s throw-in found Chloe Singleton and she composed herself before flighting in a delightful cross, which found Lyndsey McKey in the six-yard box and she made no mistake from close range.

That goal seemed to kick Bohs into life and they started to play a better and eventually got back into this match in the 71st minute.

Chloe Darby swung in a corner kick that deceived everyone including keeper Maja Zajc and it fizzled into the back of the net to give the team hope.

Darby went very close to grabbing her and Bohs’ second as her long range free-kick cannoned off the crossbar and Galway managed to clear the danger and hold off for all three points.

An overall strong performance from the home side, who thoroughly deserved to win this match.

Bohs’ young side must pick themselves up during this Easter break and come back rejuvenated as they welcome Cork City to Dublin for their next fixture on Saturday April 17th.

Bohemians: Niamh Coombes, Paula Doran, Jade Reddy, Isobel Finnegan, Chloe Flynn (C), Ally Cahill, Sophie Watters, Chloe Darby, Abbie Brophy, Bronagh Kane, Niama Chemaou. Substitutions: Erica Burke for Chemaou (H/T), Annmarie Byrne for Reddy (H/T), Erica Byrne for Cahill (H/T), Aoife Robinson for Chemaou (H/T). Unused substitutes: Niamh Kenna, Katie Lovely, Claire Conlon, Ciara Mulligan, Courtney Maguire (GK).

Galway United: Maja Zajc, Savannah McCarthy, Shauna Fox (C), Shauna Brennan, Chloe Singleton, Aoife Thompson, Lynsdey McKey, Therese Kinnevey, Kate Slevin, Chloe Maloney, Rachel Kearns. Substitutions: Tessa Mullins for Thompson, Elle O’Flaherty for Brennan, Abbie Callinan for Kearns. Substitutes not used: Keara Cormican, Sinead Donovan, Saoirse Healy, Ruth Fahy, Anna Fahy, Trish Fennelly.

 

MATCH REPORT: BOHEMIANS 2 LONGFORD TOWN 2

The epitome of a game of two halves was played out at a chilly Dalymount Park as Bohemians blew a two-goal lead against newly-promoted Longford Town.

The Gypsies led 2-0 at the break and looked to be cruising thanks to goals from Georgie Kelly and Ross Tierney.

But an inspired second half Longford Town substitution saw Conor Davis grab a brace, and so it was Daire Doyle and his troops leaving Phibsborough much the happier with the point.

Keith Long had opted for the one change from the opening night defeat on the road to Ollie Horgan’s now table-topping Finn Harps, with Keith Ward coming in for Ciaran Kelly and, in doing so, reverting to his more familiar 4-2-3-1.

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The last competitive meeting between these sides saw Bohs edge a hugely entertaining contest in the quarter-final of the 2019 FAI Cup. James Talbot proved the hero that night, brilliantly denying opposite number Lee Steacy’s decisive penalty as the home side went through 5-4, after a 1-1 stalemate AET.

And just like that evening, there was little to choose between the sides in the opening exchanges this time around.

The hosts then just started to lift the tempo slightly, moving the ball quicker and began to pin the visitors back, resulting in the breakthrough with 20 minutes played.

Liam Burt’s low cross was almost behind front man Kelly, but the talismanic striker showed his class to turn on a six-pence, control and finish with his left foot all in the one move, under the helpless Steacy.

Just a minute later, the home side thought they had doubled their lead, only to be met with an incredible double save from the busy Steacy.

Ross Tierney burst through the Longford defensive line and smashed his shot low to the left, and just as Burt looked to follow up and tap home, he was met with the cat-like reflexes of Steacy to bravely block yet again.

The Gypsies were beginning to find their groove now, and got the second goal their pressure deserved as the diminutive Tierney, sharply turned on the edge of the area and volleyed home superbly just before the half hour mark.

Last season’s runners-up sensed blood now and missed yet another glorious double chance to extend their lead as Kelly’s side-foot strike was sharply saved, with Keith Buckley volleying over the rebound.

Doyle’s men came flying out of the traps last week with a fantastic 2-0 home win against Derry City, and showed that they carried a threat with Joe Gorman looking dangerous from set pieces and the exciting Dean Byrne causing trouble down the left wing, having a good chance well saved by Talbot just before the break.

The Town were much improved in the second half and showed again just why they won’t be any pushovers this season with a much more spirited effort, and halved the deficit with 15 minutes remaining.

Bohs, a defender temporarily down due to a James Finnerty head injury and possibly showing signs of complacency with the two-goal cushion, were punished when a too-casual Bastien Héry was dispossessed close to the edge of his own area.

The ball spilled to substitute Davis, who went on a fantastic dribble through the entire Bohs rearguard all by himself before smashing the ball low across Talbot and into the back of the net.

Longford completed an incredible comeback – that didn’t look likely based on their first half performance – when Davis snuck in at the back post to tap home to get his second.

A tantalising low cross by Callum Warfiled was left by everyone in the Bohs defence, who appeared to think it was going to trickle out for a goal-kick. But supersub Davis had another idea, gambling that it would come through and he got his rewards by tapping home.

A bitterly frustrating first home game for the Gypsies, who will have to improve on this second half showing in next week’s Dublin derby against St Patrick’s Athletic at Dalymount Park (Saturday, 6pm).

But Longford showed a spirit and resolution that will no doubt serve as a threat to the rest of the division as the season progresses.

Bohemians: James Talbot, Anto Breslin, Rory Feely, Rob Cornwall, Ali Coote (Bastien Hery 64), Keith Ward (Thomas Oluwa, 76), Liam Burt (Dawson Devoy 76’), Georgie Kelly, Keith Buckley (c), James Finnerty, Ross Tierney. Unused substitutes: Stephen McGuinness, Andy Lyons, Ciaran Kelly, Bradley Rolt, Tyreke Wilson, Jack Moylan
Longford Town: Lee Steacy, Paddy Kirk, Dean Zambra (c), Dylan Grimes, Sam Verdon (Callum Warfield, 59), Aaron O’Driscoll, Aaron Bolger (Aaron Dobbs 77), Aodh Dervin, Karl Chambers (Aaron McNally 77), Dean Byrne (Conor Davis 69), Joe Gorman. Unused substitutes: Michael Kelly, Shane Elworthy, Aaron Robinson, Aaron Dobbs, Callum Thompson, Joe Manley
Referee: Ben Connolly

 

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