Croly off to a flyer with Bray
Bray Wanderers 1 St Patrick's Athletic 0
A second half winner from Peter McGlynn got Trevor Croly's Bray Wanderers' reign off to the ideal start against a surprisingly disjointed St. Pat's at the Carlisle Grounds.
Left winger McGlynn struck for the only goal of a lively encounter on 74 minutes when his cross was deflected past Brendan Clarke in the St Pat's goal by visiting right-back Conor McCormack.
It was Bray's first win in five games and only their third clean sheet of the season. The defeat ended St Pat's nine-match unbeaten run, posing questions of their title aspirations.
"It's a great start. But we must be mindful that's all it is," said Croly. "It's three points against a really smashing club in St. Pat's. We're delighted. But we move on to prepare for Bohemians, the next game."
"We have good players," added Croly. "And the key to any team being successful is work-rate.
"It's been a pleasure this last week working with them because of their attitude and their desire. Their mentality has been really, really good."
That positive attitude was evident from the off, bringing Bray the game's first chance on four minutes.
Chris Lyons got in behind and took the ball around Clarke. Inexplicably, though, he opted not to shoot himself - instead he laid the ball off for Adam Hanlon who drilled wide.
It wasn't long before St. Pat's threatened with Killian Brennan forcing Stephen McGuinness into a smart tip-over save from a free-kick 11 minutes in.
Bray continued to pass well, though, and were dangerous when they got forward.
The energetic Lyons played a return pass to McGlynn whose stinging drive was brilliantly tipped over by Clarke.
Though St. Pat's were better in the second half, Bray were resolute, epitomised by some dogged defending on 72 minutes.
Substitute Morgan Langley's cross picked out Conan Byrne in the area and he had two efforts bravely blocked by Adam Mitchell.
BRAY WANDERERS - McGuinness; Douglas, McNally, Mitchell, Barker; Hanlon, McEvoy, Kelly, McGlynn; Cassidy; Lyons (Omwubiko, 85).
ST. PATRICK'S ATHLETIC- Clarke; McCormack, Hoare, Desmond, Bermingham; Chambers; Forrester (Langley, 67), Brennan (McGrath, 86); Byrne, Kilduff, Greene.
REF - P. Sutton (Clare)