Four goals, a red card, three penalty appeals, and one late missed penalty – but still Bohs are craving an elusive home league win with more than half the season gone. Paul Skinner’s 88th minute save from Dinny Corcoran’s spot kick was enough to earn the Midlanders a point after a spirited comeback saw the Gypsies come from 2-0 down early in the second half.

The only change from the team that thrashed Bray 5-0 before the break saw Kevin Devaney make way for the returning Steven Beattie, but it was one that almost backfired – Bohs were flat and lifeless until Devaney’s introduction. The substitute ignited the Bohs comeback and earned the Man of the Match Award with a blistering 40 minutes, writes KEVIN FAGAN.


Like far too many of the league games at Dalymount this season, the home team were laboured and sluggish in the first period. Sticking with the attacking 4-4-2 formation that put Bray and Limerick to the sword, Heary set out his attacking intentions against the team that lost all 10 of their opening league games. However, movement was stifled by a hard-working three-man Athlone midfield, and Alan Byrne at the back seemed to be capable of dominating Dinny Corcoran and Steven Beattie in the air. Byrne was mopping up 99% of the disappointing long balls into the Athlone box, and Corcoran and Beattie cut frustrated figures.

Even against a dogged Town, it was a surprise when the opening goal came against the run of play. Athlone had barely ventured anywhere near Dean Delany when suddenly, a quick-fire break tore the Bohs defence open. Neat interplay between Kealan Dillon and Barry Clancy led to Clancy toe-poking the ball through to James O’Brien. Delany rushed out to close down the space, but O’Brien stayed cool and slotted the ball into the bottom corner. Bohs almost replied instantly, but Keith Buckley’s dangerous cross flashed across the face of goal and wide.

The second half couldn’t have started worse for Bohs, and in particular for Jack Memery. The left back was making his first appearance since a nightmare against Shamrock Rovers, and was completely culpable for the Athlone second, which arrived just a minute after the break. Memery dawdled on a long punt, allowing it to bounce high before attempting a hooked clearance. Sean Brennan blocked down the Memery clearance, and was suddenly bearing through on the right flank. His cross was identical to Buckley’s, and Philip Gorman hit the post sliding in at the back. However, the rebound fell straight to James O’Brien, who grabbed his second to send the small band of travelling support wild. Remember, Athlone had won a single point from 8 away games before last night.

Heary’s response was immediate. Kevin Devaney replaced Buckley on the right, and the effect was immediate. He showed a pace and power that Buckley lacked, and immediately turned the Athlone defence toward their own goal. It took just three minutes for him to grab Bohs’ first. He started a run from about thirty yards out, beat two Athlone defenders, and was suddenly in on goal. His left footed shot was somewhat scuffed, but squirmed underneath Paul Skinner and into the net.

Cue referee Paul McLaughlin’s entry into the affair. Bohs’ first penalty appeal was 50-50 as Prendergast and Beattie clashed. McLaughlin ruled that Prendergast got a touch on the ball, but Beattie, the Bohs bench, and the Jodi Stand were incensed. The second appeal was much more clear cut. A Memery cross bounced up at Alan Byrne, who dipped his arm and clearly made contact. with his bicep. Again, McLaughlin was having none of it, to the Bohs fans chagrin.

The equaliser came with more than enough time to get a winner. 77 minutes had gone when Anto Murphy’s looped header entered the box. Alan Byrne, immaculate all evening, missed his clearance, allowing Dinny Corcoran with a free shot from 6 yards. Dinny notched his 12th goal of the season, and surely there was only one winner from here? The third and final penalty claim proved to be the one – this time it was Neil Harney who hand-balled, in a similar fashion to Byrne just minutes earlier. McLaughlin was still in no mood to give it, but the linesman flagged, and Bohs had the chance to finally win a league game at Dalymount for the first time since September 2013. Harney got a second yellow card for the offence, and marched off. However, Dinny’s penalty was weakish – low and not sufficiently into the corner. Skinner palmed it away easily, and the ball was cleared for a corner.

Disappointment at not winning, but relief at not losing was clear. Bohs remain 9 points clear of bottom of the table Athlone, but with Champions St. Pats and title-chasing Cork City the next two visitors to Dalymount, the search for an elusive home league win may continue.

Bohemians: Dean Delany, Anto Murphy, Dano Byrne, Aidan Price, Jack Memery, Keith Buckley (Kevin Devaney 54), Roberto Lopes, Eoin Wearen, Paddy Kavanagh (Karl Moore, 83), Steven Beattie, Dinny Corcoran. Subs not used: Ryan McEvoy, Jason Byrne, Jake Hyland, Craig Walsh, Gavin Moore.

Athlone Town: Paul Skinner, Stephen Quigley, Derek Prendergast, Alan Byrne, Sean Byrne, Kealan Dillon, Mark Hughes, Sean Brennan, James O’Brien (Ian Sweeney 84), Barry Clancy (Neil Harney 68), Philip Gorman. Subs not used: Derek Doyle, Graham Rusk, Thomas Mulroney, Dean Mahon, Jason Marks.

Mr. Green Bohemian Man of the Match: Kevin Devaney

Pic by Eddie Lennon –



Sometimes, it all just falls into place. After weeks and weeks of toiling in the Airtricity League, struggling for goals, points, and wins, Bohemians managed to put a supreme performance together – and destroyed Bray Wanderers at the Carlisle Grounds.

A Dinny Corcoran hat-trick, an own-goal, and a Keith Buckley effort gave the Gypsies their third league win of the season, and lifted Owen Heary’s men clear of the relegation places as the league enters a mid-season break, writes KEVIN FAGAN.

Forced into two changes, Owen Heary kept faith with the 4-4-2 formation that worked well in Limerick, with Jack Memery replacing the injured Derek Pender and Kevin Devaney replacing the suspended Steven Beattie.

Devaney and Corcoran formed an instantly-effective partnership, but it was the latter who starred in front of a small crowd on the seaside. The game was just 5 minutes old when it exploded into life. Keith Buckley played a neat one-two with Corcoran, and was almost bearing down on goal when Robert Maloney dragged him down. Paul McLoughlin pointed to the spot, and Dinny fired Bohs into the lead.


A bit like Dublin buses, the goals decided to all come in quick succession – and Dinny doubled Bohs’ lead after just 10 minutes. A precision Paddy Kavanagh corner was knocked down by Anto Murphy, and Corcoran slid the ball home to send the visiting fans wild for a second time.

Eoin Wearen and Roberto Lopes continued their midfield partnership, and it was Wearen who created the third on 26 minutes. His driving run and beautiful through ball left Corcoran one-on-one with Bray keeper Shane Redmond, and he made the decision to take Dinny out. Referee McLoughlin had little choice but to send the Seagulls’ shotstopper off. Dinny dusted himself down and grabbed his hat-trick, a dream first half for the Donabate man. On the stroke of half time he nearly had a fourth, but his shot could only be turned into his own net by Robert Maloney.

4-0 up at half time, it was inevitable that Bohs would take their foot off the gas in the second half, perhaps thinking about their two-week holiday already. Positive performances included the return of Jack Memery, the increasingly solid partnership of Dan Byrne and Aidan Price, and the continued improvement of Eoin Wearen. Keith Buckley is also staking his claim for a regular starting spot, and performed excellently here. He completed the rout on 73 minutes with a neat finish from Paddy Kavanagh’s cross. Bohs can now put their feet up, watch some of the World Cup, and relax in the relative heights of 9th place. Athlone Town await at the end of the break, and a chance to continue a two-game winning streak.

Bray Wanderers: Shane Redmond, Shane O’Connor, Eric McGill, Danny O’Connor, Robert Maloney, Adam Hanlon (Shane Byrne, 74), David Cassidy, Dean Zambra, Shane O’Neill, David Scully (Jake Kelly 46), Ismahil Akinade (Gavin Sheridan 25). Subs not used: Cillian Byrne, Niall Cooney, Michael Brown, Gary Curran.

Bohemians: Dean Delany, Anto Murphy, Aidan Price, Daniel Byrne, Jack Memery (Jason Byrne, 79), Paddy Kavanagh, Roberto Lopes, Owen Wearen, Keith Buckley, Dinny Corcoran (Jake Hyland 84), Kevin Devaney (Gavin Moore 74). Subs Not Used: Stephen Traynor, Craig Walsh, Ryan McEvoy, Karl Moore. Man of the Match: Dinny Corcoran



Owen Heary may well be applying to the FAI to see if his side can play cup games every week as the Gypies marched into the FAI Cup last 16 with a well deserved away win against Limerick. A goal and an assist for Man of the Match Steven Beattie put Bohs in control on a sandy Thomond Park pitch, though the away side were made to sweat for the last 15 when Rory Gaffney pulled one back for the hosts.

Compared to just 2 league wins in 15 games, Bohs have now won 4 out of 4 in the League Cup and FAI Cup. Boss Heary went back to basics with a direct 4-4-2 formation featuring Beattie and Dinny Corcoran up front. The selection of recognised defenders Roberto Lopes and Eoin Wearen in central midfield raised more than a few eyebrows, but the battling partnership flourished in a hard-fought victory, writes KEVIN FAGAN.


Heary made 4 changes from the well-beaten side of last Friday, with Corcoran, Wearen, Lopes, and Keith Buckley replacing Jason Byrne, Craig Walsh, Dave Mulcahy, and Karl Moore. In front of a paltry crowd of just 842, Bohs made the most of the summertime atmosphere to largely negate Limerick’s threat. The Gypsies had the better of the opening exchanges, and should really have been in front after 14 minutes. Steven Beattie showed great pace to beat Shaun Kelly, and his byline pull-back was enticing. Keith Buckley stepped over the ball nicely to leave Dinny Corcoran with a simple tap-in from 6 yards, but the striker somehow contrived to skew his shot off the post and wide.

Limerick themselves were cursing the woodwork a little over a minute later when a scramble from a long throw fell to Shane Duggan, but his hooked effort cannoned up off the crossbar and was cleared. That was as good as it got for the home side in the first half as Bohs slowly began to dominate. The lead goal was well deserved, and came 10 minutes from the half. Operating from the left flank, Paddy Kavanagh put in a lovely out-swinging cross that fell kindly for the on-rushing Beattie, who finished brilliantly from 14 yards on the half-volley. Barry Ryan had no chance, and Beattie celebrated passionately in front of the jubilant away fans.

The second half started just as positively for Bohs, and they should have had a second within 5 minutes. A swift counter attack fell to Buckley on the right wing, who put in a nice square ball for Corcoran on the penalty spot, but the striker again scuffed his shot, this time well wide. If Corcoran is a confidence player, it must be very low at the moment. Happily, the misses didn’t matter as Bohs got the comfort-goal on the hour mark. Another swift counter attack clearance set Beattie free down the right, and his acrobatic hooked pass sent Paddy Kavanagh through on goal. Kavanagh just about got the ball around the diving Ryan, steadied himself, and squeezed the ball past Stephen Folan on the line. Kavanagh also came away with a goal and an assist which will delight his manager.

With 20 minutes to go, Limerick struck back. Rory Gaffney flattened Dan Byrne in the build-up, which meant he was free to be slipped in on the left channel. His curling shot could have been saved by Dean Delany, but the keeper’s hand wasn’t strong enough. Although the goal might have galvanised the home side, Owen Heary’s men were solid at the back and in midfield. Happily for their nerves, no clear cut chances arose for the home side in the last 20. There was no doubting the Man of the Match as Beattie continuously relieved pressure with lung-bursting runs and terrific hold-up play. Strangely marooned at right back for much of the early part of the season, the Skerries man showcased his pace and power in a terrific display. With just 7 Premier Division teams left in the last 16, Bohs can dream of an FAI Cup run to match their EA Sports Cup form. Next week sees a return to League action and a crunch game with Bray Wanderers on the seaside.

Limerick FC: Barry Ryan, Shaun Kelly, Stephen Folan, Samuel Oji, Shane Tracy (Ross Mann 25), Patrick Nzuzi (Kieran Hanlon, 89), Shane Duggan, Darragh Rainsford (Tony Whitehead, 63), Danny Galbraith, Tam McManus, Rory Gaffney. Subs Not Used: Shane Cusack, Michael Leahy, Shane Costelloe, Barry Sheedy.

Bohemians: Dean Delany; Derek Pender (Dave Mulcahy, 46), Aidan Price, Roberto Lopes, Dan Byrne; Eoin Wearen, Anto Murphy, Keith Buckley (Craig Walsh, 77), Paddy Kavanagh; Steven Beattie (Kevin Devaney, 88), Dinny Corcoran. Subs Not Used: Gavin Moore, Stephen Traynor, Jason Byrne, Karl Moore.

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