Dundalk survive pitch worries to extend lead
Longford Town 0 Dundalk 2
Former Longford Town boss Stephen Kenny returned to his old stomping ground on Saturday night to discover that the pitch had been made narrower.
However, Longford's ploy to halt the SSE Airtricity League leaders in there tracks didn't work as goals from Daryl Horgan and John Mountney enabled Dundalk to move seven points clear at the top of the table.
The hosts opened on the front foot, with Kevin O'Connor forcing a good save from Gary Rogers early on.
Dundalk controlled the rest of the first half but they couldn't breach the Longford back four as David McMillan, Richie Towell and Ronan Finn all wasted chances.
Horgan finally broke Longford's stubborn resistance in the 57th minute when he curled a delightful 20-yard effort past Paul Skinner via the underside of the crossbar.
Tony Cousins' men regrouped and Towell had to clear a David O'Connor snapshot off the line before Shaw's shot was saved by Rogers.
The reigning champions made sure of the points in stoppage time when substitutes Horgan and Stephen O'Donnell combined to set up Mountney, whose fierce drive left Skinner with no chance.
"It's a big win for us," said Kenny afterwards. "It was a tough game. Longford had a good tactical plan of sitting deep and denying us room. They even brought the pitch in on both sides and we couldn't find space to play our normal style."
Longford Town - Skinner; Sullivan, Rossiter, Flynn, Deady; Mulhall (Cowan 71), Rice, O'Connor, Mohamed, O'Sullivan (Simon 80), Shaw.
Dundalk - Rogers; Gannon, Gartland (Barrett 74), Boyle, Massey; Towell, Shields; Meenan (Mountney 79), Finn (O'Donnell 81), Horgan; McMillan.
Ref - P Tuite