Athlone Town 0-11 Dundalk FC
Dundalk booked their place in the 2020 Extra.ie FAI Cup final with a record-breaking 11-0 win over Athlone at Lissywoollen on Sunday night.
Michael Duffy netted two in the first half along with David McMillan, John Mountney, Andy Boyle and Patrick McEleney. They were added to in the second half by goals from captain Chris Shields and Nathan Oduwa, McMillan, Jordan Flores and Sean Murray
Patrick McEleney was the first to have an effort in the opening minute but he fired over and it was his fellow Derry native who would give the Lilywhites the lead with less than 90 seconds later.
A ball forward from Brian Gartland found Duffy and his first touch set him up through on goal and he fired past Patrick Martyn in goal.
McEleney was to set up Duffy for the second in the 9th minute when his divine ball found the number 7 in behind again and his chested effort looped over the goalkeeper to the net.
Chris Shields fired from distance as the ball went over the bar but it would be 3-0 inside 12 minutes.
Duffy’s corner was to the back post and found the unmarked Andy Boyle who thundered a header to the net.
McEleney and Duffy combined once again with the latter looking like he should have had his hat-trick when he had an opportunity to volley however he couldn’t find the target.
David McMillan was next to volley but he pulled it wide after a good cross from Duffy.
Athlone had a better spell as the match approached the half hour mark with Mark Birrane firing at Gary Rogers but the goalkeeper was equal to it.
It would be 4-0 though as McEleney teed up John Mountney and he headed to the bottom left corner when free in the six yard area.
Adam Lennon almost responded with a goal of his own however he fired a shot well wide when in space.
Duffy almost did have his third when he cleverly curled a free-kick around the home wall but it came crashing back off the post while Mountney almost had his brace when he found space but he fired over the bar.
McEleney got the goal that he deserved when Shields won the ball back high up the pitch and found him, the Derry man coolly passed the ball to the net with Martyn having no chance.
6-0 was next when McMillan tapped home from close range after Duffy’s cross was palmed into his path.
That was the score at half-time with Nathan Oduwa and Jordan Flores introduced for Sloggett and Duffy.
Manning had a long range effort go inches over the bar for Athlone to open the second half before it was 7-0.
A stunning move which had the Lilywhites moving the ball right through the pitch finished with Leahy teeing up Shields who provided stunning strike from 30 yards.
Leahy was almost provider again when his cross was met with a clever, angled header by McMillan but it came crashing off the crossbar.
It would be 8-0 just on the hour mark when McMillan’s header, from Mountney’s corner, was parried by Martyn and Oduwa was there at close range to tap home.
Daniel Kelly had the perfect opportunity to make it 9 when he found himself straight through on goal but he fired wide with just the goalkeeper to beat.
McMillan had a chance to get his second when he was set free by McEleney however he curled an effort just wide from an acute angle.
McMillan did get his goal when Oduwa’s cross found him and he finished from 12 yards.
Oduwa went in search of number 10 when he went down the left and drifted into the centre but his finishing shot was blocked and cleared to safety with just under 20 minutes left on the watch.
They did reach double figures in the 73rd minute when Oduwa did exceptionally well to get to the byline with his cross cleared to McEleney and he recycled the ball back to Flores who stroked the ball brilliantly to the top right hand corner from 20 yards.
McMillan came close to claiming his hat-trick when he guided Kelly’s cross goalwards however it came back off the crossbar once more.
Oduwa was next to provide for McMillan but his effort was lifted over the bar from point blank range before McEleney played in Kelly with a clever chip however he fired straight at Martyn.
The FAI Cup record of 11-0 was reached in the 83rd minute when Sean Murray received the ball on the edge of the area from Leahy and fired to the bottom left corner.
Flores blazed over as he looked for another while at the other end Lee Duffy fired straight at Rogers from the edge of the box.
McEleney had two chances to add to the lead however referee Rob Hennessy blew the full-time whistle after no stoppage time to send the Lilywhites into their sixth consecutive FAI Cup final against Shamrock Rovers next Sunday.
ATHLONE TOWN: Patrick Martyn; David Brookes, Scott Delaney (capt), Jack Reynolds, Evan White (Shane Nealon 33); Israel Kimazo (Lee Duffy 46), Dean George, Adam Lennon, Ciaran Grogan; Mark Birrane, Ronan Manning.
Substitutes not used: Evan O’Connor, Jordan Carroll, John Morgan, Bradley Okaijda, Ross O’Brien.
Booked: Delaney (47), Grogan (63), Duffy (70), George (88)
Sent off: None.
DUNDALK: Gary Rogers; Daniel Cleary (Sean Hoare 19), Brian Gartland, Andy Boyle (Daniel Kelly 57); John Mountney, Chris Shields (capt) (Sean Murray 57), Greg Sloggett (Jordan Flores 46), Darragh Leahy; Patrick McEleney, David McMillan, Michael Duffy (Nathan Oduwa 46).
Substitutes not used: Aaron McCarey (GK), Sean Gannon.
Booked: Murray (70)
Sent off: None.
Referee: Rob Hennessy