Bohemians suffered consecutive league defeats for the first time this season as Longford Town claimed a smash-and-grab victory at the City Calling Stadium. In a scenario similar to last week, the Gypsies conceded a sloppy winner in the dying minutes of the game. Off the field, it was all smiles with the future of Dalymount secured, but on the field, it wasn’t to be.

Keith Long’s men had numerous chances in both halves, but struggled at the other end, with goalkeeper Dean Delany keeping them in it with a string of top class saves in the first half, writes KEVIN FAGAN.


With the evening sun shining beautifully into the away fans’ eyes, the home side were straight out of the blocks, and grabbed the lead after just three minutes. Robbie Creevy was dispossessed too easily in midfield, and one pass later, David O’Sullivan was in on goal. The striker tucked the ball past Delany into the corner to give Tony Cousins’ side a dream start.

Wearing their changed green strip, it took Bohs a good 20 minutes to string a meaningful move together. Lovely hold up play from Ismahil Akinade and a splayed pass from Robbie Creevy put the returning Paddy Kavanagh away on the right, but his shot / pull-back was just inches away from Adam Evans at the back post.

Evans had another glorious chance minutes later. Akinade was involved again, brushing Mark Rossiter aside before unleashing a shot that was blocked right into Evans’ path, but his effort was blazed into the car park.

At the other end, Dean Delany was extremely busy. First, he tipped a Mark Salmon effort brilliantly over the bar, and then had to claw a Gary Shaw header away. A hoofed Steven Rice clearance somehow turned into a clear run for O’Sullivan, but Delany was out quick and saved well with his legs.

If the Bohs keeper was on top form, it was nothing compared to what Paul Skinner pulled off on 35 minutes. A long Anto Murphy throw in was flicked on by Derek Prendergast, and Robbie Creevy simply buried a header from 4 yards. However, Skinner somehow managed to save the ball and hook it over the bar. As good a point-blank save as you’ll ever see.

Bohs continued to dominate possession in the second half, and you felt an equaliser was coming. Akinade was superb throughout. He flicked a long Anto Murphy ball onto Keith Buckley, and raced onto Buckley’s lovely back-heeled return. However, the Nigerian’s toe-poked shot was just wide of Skinner’s post.

Eventually, the big man was going to make it count, and did so on 67 minutes. The hard surface of the pitch bounced a ball up, and a hesitant Longford defense allowed Akinade to bull his way through on goal. He flicked the ball past Skinner, and Keith Buckley bundled it in for good measure. The ball would more than likely have been cleared by Conor Powell, so Buckley’s intervention was essential.

From that point, it would seem that Bohs would go on and win it, but the equaliser seemed to re-invigorate Longford. A draw would probably have been a fair result, but Bohs switched off in the 88th minute, and were punished. A long ball forward was only flicked on by Dave Mulcahy, and Anto Murphy got his legs entangled, allowing Pat Sullivan to get a shot away. Prendergast managed to block the initial effort, but the ball fell to substitute Ayman Ben Mohamed, who slapped a low shot in off Delany. Ecstasy for the home fans, a forlorn journey back up the N4 for the Gypsies.

Longford Town: Paul Skinner, Pat Sullivan, Mark Rossiter (Willie Tyrell, 26), Conor Powell, Stephen Rice, Mark Salmon (Lorcan Shannon, 74), Gary Shaw, Kevin O’Connor, Jack Doherty (Ayman Ben Mohamed, 56), Rhys Gorman, David O Sullivan. Subs not used: Paul Hunt, James Mulhall, Martin Deady, Kaleem Simon.

Bohemians: Dean Delany, Anto Murphy, Dave Mulcahy, Derek Prendergast, Lorcan Fitzgerald (Stephen Best, 67), Paddy Kavanagh, Keith Buckley, Roberto Lopes, Robbie Creevy (Kealan Dillon, 85), Adam Evans (Karl Moore, 58), Ismahil Akinade. Subs not used: Lee Steacy, Jason Byrne, James O’Brien, Jake Hyland. Man of the Match: Ismahil Akinade



A truly amazing 2015 season reached its unbelievable peak for Bohemians as they obliterated fierce rivals Shamrock Rovers with a second half performance that displayed everything great about this team and club. Passion, determination, hard work, and skill combined to overturn a half-time deficit, and condemn the Hoops to their first defeat of the season. With Dundalk’s unbeaten run ended by the Gypsies last week, Keith Long’s men are fast becoming the most feared team in the land.

6 points from three games in a week against full-time professional sides is nothing short of superb, and it was nothing more than Bohs deserved with three goals in the last 15 minutes following sustained second half pressure. In yet another fairytale story, Bohs supersub Dean Kelly left his sister’s wedding reception to play, and walked away with a brace of late goals that won the game in dramatic fashion, writes KEVIN FAGAN.


Bohs boss Long was boosted by the return of experienced duo Anto Murphy and Dave Mulcahy, while Jake Hyland was given a rare start in midfield. Rovers began with only one fit striker on the books, and it was youngster Gareth McCaffrey who led the line for the visitors. It was the Hoops who began the game better. Their midfield trio of Stephen McPhail, Pat Cregg and Brandon Miele controlled the early stages.

Rovers looked dangerous down the right hand side, and Simon Madden was brought down by Lorcan Fitzgerald in the 9th minute. McPhail whipped in a pinpoint cross, and Kieran ‘Marty’ Waters ghosted in to head home unmarked from six yards. His freedom in the box was unexplained, much like the ‘Marty’ part of his name, and Rovers took an early lead.

Things didn’t get much better for Bohs in the first half hour. Izzy Akinade was isolated up front, and the Gypsies struggled to keep hold of possession in the midfield third. No such problem for Rovers, who threatened from a set piece again when a Gary McCabe corner was headed wide by David Webster. Bohs only real chance in the first half fell to the returning Anto Murphy, but he scuffed his effort from Lorcan Fitzgerald’s free kick.

It took Bohs about 30 minutes to really get into the game – and credit must go to Keith Buckley. The midfielder was relentless in his hassling and harrying of Rovers, and his winning of challenges audibly lifted the Jodi Stand. He combined with Jake Hyland to set up Bohs first shot, but Hyland dragged it tamely wide. It felt as if half time might be coming at the wrong time for Bohs – that it might halt the momentum. No chance!

What followed was a masterclass in how to turn around a Derby match. Bohs simply decided that they wanted to win this game more than Rovers, who predictably retreated into their shells. The hordes in the Des Kelly Stand grew quieter and quieter as Pat Fenlon’s men were overrun by a rampant, revitalised Bohemian side. Buckley was at the heart of it, and he set up the Gypsies’ first big chance. A beautifully weighted ball took out the Rovers back line, and found Akinade’s chest just inside the box. However, the ball ran just a touch too far ahead of him, and Craig Hyland got their in time.

Rovers’ only second half chance came after Derek Prendergast’s pass was cut out by McPhail, who lifted it over the top for McCaffrey. The youngster’s shot was brilliantly saved by Dean Delany, who stuck out a foot to keep Bohs in the game. Prendergast decided to make up for his mistake in the best way possible.

With 14 minutes to go, it was that man Lorcan Fitzgerald who produced yet another brilliant set piece. His pinpoint outswinging corner found Prendergast at the edge of the six yard box, and the defender rocketed a header in off the crossbar. It was a thumping, aggressive header – and brave too. He could have got an almighty whack, but nothing was stopping him from getting to that ball first. The Jodi Stand erupted, and there was only going to be one winner from there. You could sense it.

After attending his sister’s wedding ceremony this morning, you could forgive Dean Kelly for being distracted. But he was busy and pro-active from the moment he came onto the field. And when his chance came, he took it. Again, Fitzgerald was the instigator. This time, his inswinging free kick from right in front of the Bohs dugout did the trick. It fell right onto Kelly’s head at the back post. The finish wasn’t pretty, it came off his shoulder and looped into the net – but you try tell that to the masses in the Jodi Stand, who were close to combusting with joy.

There was even time for a cherry on the icing on the cake. Rovers, in a rare break from the norm, actually pushed men forward, and the gaps were ruthlessly exploited. Akinade was sent clear down the left flank, and beat the onrushing Craig Hyland to the ball. With the keeper out of the game, the Nigerian striker got himself on his feet, looked up, and delivered a beautiful floated cross to the unmarked Kelly, who tapped in to cap a truly memorable evening.

A fitting way to close the book on a terrific, expectation-busting first half of the season for Keith Long’s Bohemians. If the second half of the season is anywhere near as fantastic as tonight’s second half performance, we’re in for a treat.

Bohemians: Dean Delany, Anto Murphy, Dave Mulcahy, Derek Prendergast, Lorcan Fitzgerald, Karl Moore, Keith Buckley (Kealan Dillon, 85), Roberto Lopes, Jake Hyland (Dean Kelly, 72), Adam Evans, Ismahil Akinade. Subs not used: Lee Steacy, Jason Caffrey, Robert Duggan, James O’Brien, Adam Wixted.

Shamrock Rovers: Craig Hyland, Simon Madden, Conor Kenna (Tim Clancy, 46), David Webster, Luke Byrne, Kieran ‘Marty’ Waters, Pat Cregg, Gary McCabe, Stephen McPhail, Brandon Miele (Ryan Brennan, 81), Gareth McCaffrey (Gavin Brennan, 70). Subs not used: Barry Murphy, David O’Connor, Cian Kavanagh, Dylan Kavanagh.

Mr.Green Man of the Match: Keith Buckley



A clinical brace from Christy Fagan and a top-class free kick from Killian Brennan brought Bohemians back down to earth after their Dundalk triumph. The former Gypsies starred in a convincing win for the Saints, who could easily have added to their tally as Bohs pushed on to claw the game back. Keith Long’s men had earlier equalised thanks to a thumping header from Derek Prendergast, but Pats were too strong, and leapfrogged their visitors into 4th place via a superior goal difference.

Long was forced into two changes from the team that had toppled Dundalk the last time out. Kealan Dillon started in place of Dave Mulcahy, while Dylan Hayes came in for Stephen Best, with Roberto Lopes moving one in to centre back. Without a league victory over Pats in five years, the Bohs fans travelled in numbers, but with trepidation that was well-founded, writes KEVIN FAGAN.


The opening minutes were scrappy, with neither side stringing many passes together. Izzy Akinade resumed up front for Bohs, and won a couple of early headers, but they fruitlessly landed at Pats’ defender’s feet. Referee Padraigh Sutton provoked the ire of the Bohs faithful when he booked Lorcan Fitzgerald for his first foul on Chris Forrester at the edge of the box. Killian Brennan’s free kick flashed just wide. Perennial pest and persistent fouler Greg Bolger escaped punishment, despite committing four fouls in the first 20 minutes.

Bohs had a penalty shout on 12 minutes, when a Dylan Hayes ball into the box reached Robbie Creevy. The midfielder went down under pressure from Sean Hoare, but it would have been a very soft call. Creevy was subsequently withdrawn with what looked like a groin injury, replaced by James O’Brien. Bohs’ injury list grows longer and longer – the mid season break might be coming at just the right time.

As is usual against St Pats, the old guard come back to haunt Bohs. Christy Fagan (no relation), is no stranger to goals against his old team, and delivered again in the 22nd minute. Forrester and Aaron Greene combined on the left before Greene dinked the ball in to Fagan with his back to goal. The resulting finish was superb, with the striker looping the ball back over his head into Dean Delany’s top corner.

Pats were ahead for just 10 minutes, and again it was Lorcan Fitzgerald who provided an assist. His whipped out-swinging corner was delivered perfectly onto the head of Derek Prendergast, who thumped a header from six yards. It may have gotten a touch on the way in, but that was fine by the Bohs fans in the Shed End who were ecstatic.

The Gypsies had a great chance to go into the break ahead. Akinade shrugged off both centre backs and put Adam Evans through, but the winger’s run drove him a bit wide, and the resulting shot was easily saved by Brendan Clarke.

Unfortunately for Bohs, that was about as good as it got, with Pats completely dominating the second half. Their lead goal was a cracker. Brennan’s corner was clipped to the edge of the box where Ian Bermingham let fly with a brilliant left-footed volley. The ball may well have been heading in, but Fagan made sure, flicking it into the top corner with his head from close range. The striker then continued his unnecessary habit of celebrating in front of the Bohs fans, who reacted with admirable restraint.

The final goal was the result of a contentions decision. Chris Forrester was allowed to prance through by Keith Buckley, and was brought down on the edge of the box with an incredibly minimal amount of contact. If Killian Brennan was practicing free kicks before the game, he’d place it in that exact spot. The ball was fizzed over the Bohs wall, and predictably nestled into the corner. Keith Long was brave in his substitutions, bringing Dean Kelly and Jason Byrne on for a defender and midfielder, but Bohs couldn’t find a way through. Indeed, Pats could easily have extended their lead with Aaron Greene, James Chambers, and Fagan all fluffling their lines in front of goal.

Bohs must now dust themselves down for a huge encounter with Shamrock Rovers on Friday. Get down early, they don’t come much bigger than this!

St. Patrick’s Athletic: Brendan Clarke, Ger O’Brien (Lee Desmond, 61), Sean Hoare, Kenny Browne, Ian Bermingham, Greg Bolger, James Chambers, Killian Brennan, (Conor McCormack, 78), Chris Forrester, Aaron Greene, Christy Fagan (Jamie McGrath, 75). Subs not used: Conor O’Malley, Jason McGuinness, Morgan Langley, Ciaran Kilduff.

Bohemians: Dean Delany, Dylan Hayes (Dean Kelly 69), Roberto Lopes, Derek Prendergast, Lorcan Fitzgerald, Karl Moore (Jason Byrne, 75), Keith Buckley, Robbie Creevy (James O’Brien, 29), Kealan Dillon, Adam Evans, Ismahil Akinade. Subs not used: Lee Steacy, Jason Caffrey, Jake Hyland, Adam Wixted. Man of the Match: Roberto Lopes

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