Lilywhites extend winning run
Dundalk maintained their eight-point lead at the top of the SSE Airtricity League on Monday evening with a 3-0 victory over Waterford at Oriel Park.
An early own goal from Kenny Browne and Daniel Kelly’s first half strike were added to by Jamie McGrath after the break, as the Lilywhites made it eight league wins on the trot.
Dundalk took the lead after just two minutes when Daniel Kelly’s cross cannoned off Waterford goalkeeper Matthew Connor and back off the helpless Kenny Browne into the empty net.
Patrick Hoban had the ball in the net from Dan Kelly’s cross after 10 minutes, but the assistant referee’s flag was up to rule the goal out for offside.
Bastien Hery had Waterford’s first chance when JJ Lunney pulled it back for the Frenchman but he fired straight at Daniel Cleary.
Sean Hoare played a wonderful ball forward to release both Patrick McEleney and Hoban however the latters touch took the chance away from the number nine.
Dean Walsh rounded Gary Rogers but Cleary was able to clear before Hoban was brilliantly denied by Matthew Connor after McEleney’s through ball.
It was 2-0 on 25 minutes when Hoban crossed for Kelly at the back post to thump to the net.
Lunney almost pulled one back but his shot came crashing off the crossbar before Walsh tried his luck from 25 yards, but it was straight at Rogers.
Dundalk had two quickfire chances just before the break when McEleney first shot just over the bar from 30 yards, before Sean Gannon had the final action of the half with a volley from the edge of the area, but he too fired over.
It was a quiet opening to the second half with both sides struggling on the ball.
Hoban came close to adding to the tally just before the hour mark when he fired inches wide after a wonderful ball to him by McEleney.
It would be 3-0 just after 60 minutes when Jamie McGrath finished to the net after Duffy’s cross was met by Hoban.
His header was knocked back to McGrath by Connor and he showed excellent technique to keep the ball down and score.
Karolis Chvedukas tried to pull one back for Waterford but he fired well wide and Hery stole in behind Brian Gartland at the back post but his header was never getting near the target.
It should have been 4-0 though when Robbie Benson played in Hoban however he fired inches wide with the goalkeeper beaten.
Waterford then hit the crossbar again when Shane Duggan found himself in front of goal just outside the area but his excellent shot came back off the bar and bounced to safety.
Hery then hit the post with a glancing header from Georgie Poynton’s corner as the Lilywhites faced some pressure in the closing stages.
DUNDALK: Gary Rogers; Sean Gannon, Sean Hoare (Brian Gartland 46), Daniel Cleary; Chris Shields, Patrick McEleney (Robbie Benson 66); Daniel Kelly, Jamie McGrath, Michael Duffy (Sean Murray 74); Patrick Hoban.
Substitutes not used: Aaron McCarey (GK), Cameron Dummigan, Georgie Kelly, Dane Massey.
Sent off: None.
WATERFORD: Matthew Connor; Georgie Poynton, Kenny Browne (Cory Galvin 46), Damien Delaney, Kevin Lynch (John Martin 70); JJ Lunney, Dean Walsh (Dean O’Halloran 65), Karolis Chvedukas, Bastien Hery, Shane Duggan; Rory Feely.
Substitutes not used: Paul Martin (GK), Maxim Kouogun, Shane Griffen, Regix Madika.
Booked: Chvedukas (16)
Sent off: None.
Referee: Derek Tomney