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Match report: Dundalk 0 Bohemians 1

Bohemians grabbed our first win of the season on Friday night with an impressive and morale-boosting win at Oriel Park thanks to an early Georgie Kelly penalty.

Keith Long had spoken in previous weeks about the team needing time to gel with nine new players incorporated in his squad, but this was the perfect tonic as Bohs put in an assured team performance to take all three points back down the M1.

Both sides entered the encounter off the back of a slower than expected start to the season sitting on a point apiece, and desperately hoping to get back on track.

For the visiting Gypsies, Long elected for two changes to the side that fell to a 1-0 defeat at home to St Patrick’s Athletic last Saturday.

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In came Tyreke Wilson, for his first start to the season at left-back in place of Anto Breslin, while Keith Ward was included at the expense of Dawson Devoy.

Despite the changes, it was the Lilywhites who looked to enforce their game plan and try to dominate proceedings, with Andy Boyle clipping the crossbar with an early header and Michael Duffy cutting in from the left wing but dragging a tame shot past James Talbot’s near post.

Bohs dealt with these early jabs, and responded well landing a big blow of their own.

Ross Tierney, being deployed in the No 10 position, picked up the ball and drove at the heart of the Dundalk defence, showing brilliant pace and a low centre of gravity, and was eventually scythed down by wreckless challenge by Dan Cleary just inside the edge of the area.

Up stepped Kelly, who confidently sent Peter Cherrie the wrong way to give Bohs the lead against his former side, with just 12 minutes played.

The hosts made a big call in dropping under-fire keeper Alessio Abibi and bringing in the aforementioned Cherrie in a bid to try resolve their defensive woes.

They responded well to the early setback. Pat Hoban, on the occasion of his 200th appearance for Dundalk, went close with a header midway through the first half but was martialled well by central defensive duo Rob Cornwall and James Finnerty.

It was Bohs who carried the bigger goal threat in the first half. They looked dangerous on the break, and were almost gifted a chance to double their lead just after the half-hour mark when Kelly pounced on a sloppy play by Cherrie, dispossessing the keeper but couldn’t pull the ball back to Tierney in the area.

Just before the break, it looked as if Liam Burt had doubled the Gypsies’ lead but, with Cherrie beaten all ends up, he was unlucky to see his powerful low drive narrowly miss the bottom corner.

As expected, the FAI Cup winners came out in the second half with a fire in their bellies looking to push for an equaliser but were met with a strong resolute Bohs defensive unit.

But Bohs’ hard work was almost undone before the hour mark following some sloppy play from their own throw-in, and had Talbot to thank for keeping the lead intact as he denied Sam Stanton from point-blank range with one of the saves of the season so far.

Rory Feely, who had replaced the injured Andy Lyons at right back earlier in the half, delivered a dangerously whipped cross just past the penalty spot but the busy Tierney was unable to guide the ball goalwards, as Bohs continued to carry a threat despite less possession than their hosts.

Kelly also went close with a dipping strike just outside the edge of the area.

As their desperation grew, Dundalk opted for a more direct route, bombarding Talbot’s area with long hopeful crosses and despite appeals for penalties, including a handball claim against Cornwall, did not otherwise create many clear-cut opportunities to trouble the Bohs backline.

The clock ticked agonizingly towards the 90-minute mark and the final whistle was greeted with a sense of relief from the Gypsies players and staff as they secured their first win of the 2021 season.

Long and his troops will be hoping this much-improved performance and result can be the catalyst to make it two wins from two away to Waterford at the RSC next week.

Dundalk: Peter Cherrie, Cameron Dummigan (Ryan O’Kane 78), Dan Cleary, Andy Boyle, Sam Stanton (David McMillan 63), Chris Shields (C), Raivas Jurkovkis (Darragh Leahy 63), Han Jeongwoo (Patrick McEleney 45), Ole Erik Midstkogen (Junior 63), Pat Hoban, Michael Duffy. Unused substitutes: Greg Sloggett, Jesus Perez, Val Adedokun, Alessio Abibi.
Bohemians: James Talbot, Andy Lyons (Rory Feely 50), Rob Cornwall, James Finerty, Tyreke Wilson, Keith Ward (Dawson Devoy 84), Ross Tierney, Keith Buckley (C), Ali Coote (Ciarán Kelly 83), Liam Burt, Georgie Kelly. Unused substitutes: Stephen McGuinness, Bradley Rolt, Jack Moylan, Robbie Mahon, Bastien Héry, Anto Breslin.
Referee: Rob Harvey.

Dundalk v Bohemians - SSE Airtricity League Premier Division

Highlights: Dundalk 0 Bohemians 1

Georgie Kelly’s first-half penalty gave a much-improved Bohemians a deserved victory away to Dundalk at Oriel Park.

Preview: Dundalk v Bohemians

DUNDALK v BOHEMIANS
SSE Airtricity League
Friday April 9 2021, 7.45pm
Live on WatchLOI

Bohemians and Dundalk finished second and third respectively last season but three games into the 2021 season they find themselves going head to head at the opposite end of the table.

While it is very early days yet, both sides have taken just one point from their opening three games and both are keen to kick-start their season at Oriel Park this evening.

A frustrating 1-0 defeat away to Finn Harps on the opening night of the season was followed by a 2-2 draw against Longford Town and a 1-0 defeat to St Patrick’s Athletic.

Midfielder Keith Ward, the oldest member of the squad this season at 30, is around long enough to know Bohs have enough about them to turn that form around.

He said: “There is no getting away from it that one point is disappointing. We are disappointed with the performances too, not just the results. It was particularly disappointing to give away a set-piece goal in the defeat to St Pat’s.

“It has been a difficult start but for as long as I have been here the fans have stuck behind us.

“It’s difficult with them not being there behind us – the games actually feel even more important because you know so many people are at home wishing they could be there.”

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Dundalk have been the pacesetters for the best part of the last decade but Ward is undaunted and is looking forward to taking on his former club.

He added: “Every game in this league is tough. Dundalk are a top side and it’s great game to look forward to.

“Like us they only have one point from three games. They have a lot of unknown players but they still have good quality too.

“But we have a real chance to turn things around too. We just have to stick with each other.”

TEAM NEWS

Bohemians are once again without wingers Stephen Mallon (metatarsal) and Promise Omochere (knee).

Finn Harps v Bohemians - SSE Airtricity League Premier Division

INTERVIEW: CHLOE DARBY AND AOIFE ROBINSON

Chloe Darby and Aoife Robinson caught up with Emma Clinton and Emma Meyler to reflect on Bohemians’ start to the WNL season. Next up after an extended Easter break is a home game against Cork City on Saturday April 17th.

Emma Clinton and Emma Meyler are communications students in DCU and have joined the Bohemians media team this season as part of the partnership between the two organisations.

 

INTERVIEW: ANDY LYONS AND KEITH WARD

Bohemians right-back Andy Lyons and midfielder Keith Ward caught up with Daniel Kiely and Cormac O’Gara at the DCU Sport Campus.

The duo spoke about the tricky start to the season so far and looked ahead to Friday’s trip to Dundalk, while Lyons reflected on his recent time away with the Ireland U21s.

Daniel Kiely and Cormac O’Gara are communications students in DCU and have joined the Bohemians media team this season as part of the partnership between the two organisations.

INTRODUCING BOHS’ eLOI PLAYER: ERIC FINN

Introducing Eric Finn, aka XampL, who is representing Bohemians in the first-ever edition of the eLOI FIFA 21 competition.

The new tournament sees all 20 LOI clubs pitted together and gets underway tonight, with Eric’s first fixture coming next week, when he faces Cabinteely on Tuesday.

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We caught up with Eric to explain to us what the tournament is all about…

What is Esports?

“Esports is just like any other sport. It is just a form of competition based around a select few video games that have implemented competitiveness in to the core of the selected game. I was never the best at football in real life, but being premier standard in the DDSL for 7/8 years with my local football club being competitive was bred into me from an early age, and when I found Esports that drive only strengthened.”

How did you get in to Fifa Esports?

“So when I was in my second year of University, I was working around the clock with my job too so I needed an escape every couple of days from the seriousness of life, so I started playing Fifa again after a year or two of not playing it at all.

Who is XampL?

“I am just a bloke from South Dublin that likes to play/stream an array of games but just so happen to be one of the best in Ireland at Fifa. I have helped create the first-ever Esports Uni scholarship in Ireland, appeared in newspapers to talk Esports and radio/podcasts to chat about my past and the future of this forever-growing industry that is Esports. But most of all XampL is just a success-hungry 24 year old man from Dublin named Eric Finn.”

What is the eLeague of Ireland and how do you feel going into it?

“This is the inaugural Fifa Esports competition in Ireland where all SSE Airtricity League teams get to select a Fifa player to compete for the first ever trophy. It’s great to see some movement in this scene and I’m just off the back of some good form coming top 65 in Europe at the latest Fut Champions Cup Qualifier #5 (EA Event), which put me #1 in Ireland on Xbox.

“I mainly compete on Xbox, so coming over to Playstation to compete in this tournament is going to need some correcting but I feel in pole position given my current form, and the backing of the largest fan-owned club in the country that is Bohemians. All the competitors know who I am, and I’m sure they won’t be delighted if they see I’m their next opponent when the league starts up.”

What is the goal for eLeague of Ireland?

“That’s an easy answer. Beat Rovers, lift the trophy. Anything short of that will need some reflection!”

Post-match interview: Dawson Devoy

Teenage midfielder Dawson Devoy made his first start of the season in Bohemians’ defeat to St Patrick’s Athletic on Saturday and afterwards spoke to Colm McDonnell.

Colm McDonnell is a communications student in DCU and has joined the Bohemians media team this season as part of the partnership between the two organisations.

Post-match interview: Keith Long

Bohemians manager Keith Long spoke to Colm McDonnell following Sunday’s disappointing defeat to St Patrick’s Athletic and looked forward to Friday’s trip to face Dundalk.

Colm McDonnell is a communications student in DCU and has joined the Bohemians media team this season as part of the partnership between the two organisations.

Highlights: Bohemians 0 St Patrick’s Athletic 1

Highlights of Saturday’s Dublin derby against St Patrick’s Athletic at Dalymount Park. A second-half effort from Ronan Coughlan was enough to give the visitors all three points on a frustrating evening for the Gypsies.

Highlights: Galway United 3 Bohemians 1

Highlights of our second WNL game of the 2021 season as Bohemians lost 3-1 away to Galway United with Chloe Darby on target for the Gypsies. Filmed by Justin Burke.

 

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