Lilywhites Secure Hard Fought Win In Sligo
Dundalk moved three points clear at the top of the SSE Airtricity League on Monday evening with a hard fought 2-0 win over Sligo Rovers at The Showgrounds.
Michael Duffy’s stunning first half strike was added to by Patrick Hoban’s 24th league goal of the campaign with 15 minutes to go which sealed a crucial win for the Lilywhites.
Sligo Rovers had the better of the opening exchanges and Rhys McCabe had an effort from distance but Gary Rogers was equal to it.
The Lilywhites managed to get into the came and took control of possession.
Dane Massey found space 30 yards from goal and he let fly however Mitchell Beeney palmed the ball away.
Dylan Connolly’s pace was causing problems and he linked up well with Patrick Hoban on the right however in the 20th minute as he was just about to shoot he was brilliantly blocked by John Mahon.
Dundalk took the lead just before the half hour mark when Chris Shields’ ball looked destined for no one however Michael Duffy was the first to react and he picked it up 30 yards from goal before advancing past three defenders and curling a wonderful effort to the bottom right hand corner past the dive of Beeney.
Duffy almost doubled the lead when he caught Sean Hoare’s cross on the volley however it was gathered by the goalkeeper.
Rogers produced a stunning save to deny Mikey Drennan from point blank range just before the break while at the other end Jamie McGrath almost made it 2-0 when he got on the end of a superb Duffy cross however he scooped the ball over the bar.
The second half was a lower intensity affair with both sides struggling to create anything of note.
Sean Gannon’s cross which turned into a shot and was held by Beeney was the closest that anyone came in the opening parts of the half.
Duffy looked threatening on the ball always and he almost made it 2-0 with 15 minutes left on the watch when he took a superb touch to get himself through on goal however his low drive was saved by the legs of Beeney.
The follow up was turned behind for a corner and from that kick it would be 2-0.
Duffy superbly whipped the ball in for the head of Hoban and his clever header was to the bottom right hand corner past the goalkeeper.
Hoban looked to bag his second however his rasping drive from 25 yards went inches over the bar.
Hoban then had an even better opportunity to get his brace when he was in the right place to receive Duffy’s cross however he pulled it wide from 6 yards.
That proved to be the final action of note as Stephen Kenny’s men saw the game out and secured their 13th league win in the row.
SLIGO ROVERS: Mitchell Beeney; Patrick McClean, Kyle Callan-McFadden, Jack Keaney, John Mahon; Rhys McCabe (Lewis Morrison 83), Lee Lynch, David Cawley, Kris Twardek (Adam Wixted 63), Regan Donelon (Raffaele Cretaro 70); Mikey Drennan.
Substitutes not used: Ed McGinty (GK), Seamus Sharkey, Liam Kerrigan, Darren Collins.
Booked: Cawley (31), McCabe (34), Keaney (51)
DUNDALK: Gary Rogers; Sean Gannon, Brian Gartland (capt), Sean Hoare, Dane Massey; Chris Shields, Robbie Benson (Dean Jarvis 89); Dylan Connolly (Patrick McEleney 70), Jamie McGrath (John Mountney 79), Michael Duffy; Patrick Hoban.
Substitutes not used: Gabriel Sava (GK), Ronan Murray, Daniel Cleary, Georgie Kelly.
Booked: Connolly (68), Massey (70)
Sent off: None.
Referee: Ben Connolly