Photo Gallery & Report: Dundalk 4-1 Galway United
Goals from Dean Bennett, Johnny Breen, Mark Quigley and Daniel Kearns saw Dundalk ease into the FAI Ford Cup Fourth Round as they came from behind to defeat Galway United 4-1 at Oriel Park on Sunday afternoon, as they finally recorded a victory from an afternoon kick-off. The Lilywhites had started well but fell behind just before the quarter-hour mark when Alan Murphy fired in from ten-yards after a pull-back from Mikey Gilmore. But the hosts were ahead by the break as Bennett headed in a Kearns corner and Breen finished neatly after a superb through-ball from Mark Griffin. Quigley, from the spot, and Kearns, with a free-kick, made sure of progress with goals on 74 and 76 minutes.
Photo Gallery, courtesy of Nigel Caldwell: Here!
Dundalk manager Ian Foster made three changes to the side that lost 1-0 away to Sligo Rovers last Monday evening, as Colin Hawkins (ill), Michael Hector (knee) and Nathan Murphy (hamstring) were replaced by Kearns, Greg Bolger and Breen. Bennett went in beside Guthrie at centre-half while Ross Gaynor filled in at left-back. Breen played a part in the first real chance which came after just two minutes when he laid the ball back to strike-partner Griffin and his fierce low shot was pushed away by Greg Fleming. Shortly after, Dundalk broke with pace and Quigley saw a shot from outside the box, on the left, saved by Fleming. And the Galway netminder was called into action again within seconds as he denied Quigley once more after the former Saint Patrick’s Athletic man was found in acres of space by a long ball forward from Gaynor.
The next chance arrived on nine minutes when the returning Kearns found Breen who was first denied by Shaun Maher, but the central defender then slipped, allowing Breen time and space for a shot but he saw a low effort saved by Fleming. Within seconds, Kearns got in on the right of the area and drilled a low shot which was deflected and looping into the far corner only for Maher to clear, with Quigley about to make sure at the back post. Galway, however, hit the front on 13 minutes when Gilmore got to the by-line and pulled the ball back for Murphy who made no mistake with the finish, firing past Peter Cherrie from ten-yards. Dundalk continued on the front foot but at the other end Karl Moore had a shot deflected wide, before Griffin did well at the other end to force a corner on the left. And from it the hosts found the equaliser as Bennett met Kearns’ corner at the front post and headed to the far top corner.
Almost straight from that, Galway threatened as Maher headed back across goal, Cherrie gathering but then spilling the ball, though the referee adjudged that the ‘keeper had been pushed. Keith Ward threatened on 26 minutes but Paul Sinnott remained cool to head back to Fleming. Gaynor then curled a near 30-yard free-kick over the bar. Past the half-hour, Quigley attempted a repeat of his Goal of the Month against Galway back in March but this time his low free was blocked away. Ward picked up possession outside the box and a neat flick allowed him space to cross from the left, with Shane Guthrie appearing to be fouled in the area, but the referee waved away the loud protests. On 34 minutes, Dundalk went within inches of taking the lead when Simon Madden and Kearns combined down the right, the latter’s cross low and dangerous but just too strong for the in-rushing Griffin who couldn’t have been closer to connecting in the six-yard box. Griffin and Quigley then linked up on the left but the ‘keeper got there just before the latter.
But Dundalk deservedly hit the front on the stroke of half-time when Griffin, with options, decided to slip in Breen who coolly finished over Fleming, the ball just creeping into the bottom corner. The home side could have made it a two-goal advantage on 48 minutes as Griffin dispossessed Sinnott in the box with Kearns picking up possession and drilling a low shot which Fleming did well to push behind with his feet. Kearns then tried to find Quigley in the box with a clever return pass but it just ran under the feet of the 25-year-old. On the hour mark, Kearns’ corner was again met by Bennett, this time at the back post where the English midfielder could only direct the ball the wrong side of the target. On 61 minutes, Quigley was fouled by Shaun Kelly in the box as the ex-Dundalk right-back dragged his shirt, but again there was no penalty given. Griffin was then fouled in the same way but again the man in the middle said no, but finally he pointed to the spot on 73 minutes when Kearns was dragged down. Quigley stepped up and finished to the bottom corner, and it was 4-1 two minutes later when Kearns’ free-kick from the right-back area went all the way in. Shaun Kelly was dismissed in the final minute of injury time after a second yellow card, Galway finishing with nine men after Seán Kelly had been stretchered off.
DUNDALK FC: Peter Cherrie; Simon Madden ©, Dean Bennett, Shane Guthrie, Ross Gaynor; Daniel Kearns, Greg Bolger (Philip Duffy 79), Keith Ward (Chris Kerr 79), Mark Quigley; Mark Griffin, Johnny Breen.
Goals: D Bennett (20), J Breen (45), Quigley (74 pen), Kearns (76).
Unused Subs: Paul Murphy (GK).
GALWAY UNITED FC: Greg Fleming; Shaun Kelly, Paul Sinnott ©, Shaun Maher, Stephen Walshe; Bobby Ryan (Gary Kelly 76), Seán Kelly, Gary Curran (Brian Cash 51), Alan Murphy, Karl Moore (Shane Keogh 63); Mikey Gilmore.
Goal: A Murphy (13).
Booked: G Curran (30), B Cash (75), Shaun Kelly (80, 90+3).
Sent-Off: Shaun Kelly (90+3).
Unused Subs: Conor Winn (GK), Joseph Yoffe, Evan Preston Kelly.
Referee: Paul Tuite (Dublin).
Attendance: 576 (Official).