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Match Report

Dundalk fell to a disappointing 2-0 defeat by Galway United at Oriel Park on Friday night, as first-half goals from Ed McCarthy and Aodh Dervin did the damage.

Robbie Benson had threatened early on, but Galway took a tenth-minute lead through McCarthy to stun the majority of the 3,122 in attendance. Shortly after hitting the post, the visitors added a second on the half-hour when Dervin glanced beyond George Shelvey.

Dundalk did show a spark towards the end of the first half, Daryl Horgan having their clearest opening of the night, but they ultimately failed to fire.

Stephen O’Donnell named an unchanged side to the one that started in the draw at Shamrock Rovers, and the hosts had the first chance on seven minutes, but the ball fell unkindly in the box for Benson who could only direct a tame effort at Brendan Clarke.

On nine minutes, Colm Horgan’s ball over the top set Karl O’Sullivan free, but seemingly in the clear, Mayowa Animasahun had the pace to get back and put the Limerick native off his stride as he attempted to shoot.

That was a warning, and, in their next attack, Galway had the lead. Dervin clipped a through-ball for David Hurley to run onto on the right of the area and he squared to McCarthy who finished from close range.

Dundalk were lucky not to be 2-0 down in the 25th minute when Hurley’s cross, from a short corner, beat everybody and came back off the inside of the post, with O’Sullivan unable to turn it in.

However, Galway did soon double their lead when Regan Donelon swung in a cross for Dervin who found the net.

Five minutes before the break, Dundalk finally came alive. First, they put together a fine attacking move with Archie Davies and Benson involved, Horgan remaining calm to come inside his man but with just Clarke to beat, he shot straight at the ‘keeper.

Moments later, Davies pulled the ball back to the edge for Scott High whose shot was blocked, and then Dundalk’s right-back caused more problems, this time Clarke gathering after Colm Horgan almost turned into his own net.

O’Donnell introduced Cami Elliott at the break, but it was Galway who almost scored again on 53 minutes. O’Sullivan was put through on goal but in a one-on-one, Shelvey denied him to just about keep Dundalk in it.

Elliott headed at Clarke from a Horgan right-wing delivery on the hour. Dundalk, though, were struggling and the manager soon called on Ciaran McGuckin and Sam Durrant from the bench.

Durrant almost immediately created a chance with his cross from the left headed over by Elliott while McGuckin, on his debut, also had a sight of goal.

Robbie Mahon and Paul Doyle were then called upon with less than a quarter-of-an-hour left. However, the Galway defence would have little to worry about in the remaining time, as – despite Doyle forcing Clarke to tip around the post in injury time – John Caulfield’s men collected a comfortable three points.

DUNDALK FC: George Shelvey, Archie Davies, Mayowa Animasahun (Paul Doyle 77), Andy Boyle, Jamie Walker, Scott High, Zak Bradshaw (Cami Elliott HT), Daryl Horgan, Robbie Benson (Robbie Mahon 77), Ryan O’Kane (Sam Durrant 65), Jamie Gullan (Ciaran McGuckin 65). Subs not used: Ross Munro (GK), Louie Annesley, Zak Johnson, Hayden Muller.

GALWAY UNITED: Brendan Clarke, Colm Horgan, Rob Slevin, Killian Brouder, Regan Donelon, Vincent Borden, Conor McCormack, Aodh Dervin (Al-Amin Kazeem 73), David Hurley (Patrick Hickey 83), Ed McCarthy (Leo Gaxha 90+4), Karl O’Sullivan (Thomas Costello 90+4). Subs not used: Joseph Wright (GK), Conor O’Keeffe, Maurice Nugent, Francely Lomboto, Jeannot Esua.

REFEREE: Gavin Colfer.


Club1st Half2nd HalfGoals
Dundalk FC000
Galway United202


Date Time League Season
February 23, 2024 7:45 pm Premier Division 2024 League of Ireland