Boyd seals derby delight for Rovers with late strike to foil 10-man Bohs
Shamrock Rvs 3 Bohemians 1
Building on their encouraging display in Finland last week despite their Europa League exit, Stephen Bradley got the sweetest of first wins as interim Shamrock Rovers manager from an engrossing Dublin derby at Tallaght Stadium.
Adding to their 4-0 win in Phibsboro in April, this was a welcome first league win for Rovers over their arch-rivals in Tallaght in over four years. The result was perhaps tough on in-form Bohemians who, playing with 10 men for over 70 minutes, contributed hugely.
The action began early as Rovers' energetic start resulted in their being awarded a third-minute penalty. Dan Byrne clumsily tripped Simon Madden in the area and, after a slight delay, referee Paul McLaughlin pointed to the spot.
Bohs' angst at the concession was replaced by delight as Dean Delany dived low to his right to push Brandon Miele's spot-kick against the post and to safety.
The visitors soon appeared to have settled into the game, with Kurtis Byrne finding the range, if not the direction, of Craig Hyland's goal to register their first opening, before they were again left questioning official McLaughlin on 19 minutes as they were reduced to ten men.
Replays proved they could have no complaints, though, as midfielder Keith Buckley went in with his studs, catching Gavin Brennan, and was rightly shown a straight red card.
Remarkably, Bohemians then stole the lead four minutes later. It was route-one stuff as Delany's clearance ran through for winger Kurtis Byrne who, with Hyland a little too far off his line, lobbed the stranded keeper.
The lead lasted just eight minutes as Madden got forward to find 17-year-old Aaron Dobbs, making his full league debut, to fashion Rovers' equaliser.
Though the youngster's initial shot was blocked by the feet of Delany, he showed composure to pick out Dean Clarke at the back post for the unattended winger to sidefoot home. Further poor defending then cost Bohemians a second goal on 35 minutes.
Madden's deep cross from the right was headed down by Clarke and Shaw nipped in before either Derek Prendergast or Delany could react to poke home.
Remarkably, a compelling half ended with Bohemians almost levelling in added time.
Shaw's attempted headed clearance from Kurtis Byrne's free kick inadvertently fell for Roberto Lopes who contrived to somehow blast a volley off the underside of the crossbar.
Rovers enjoyed good possession from the restart without threatening before Bohemians came close again on 62 minutes. The power and pace of Akinade brought a cross in from the right. Kurtis Byrne, stretching, toed over the top.
That ignited the second half, but it was Rovers who soon asserted their numerical advantage to win the game with a delightful third on 70 minutes. Sub Sean Boyd worked a one-two with Shaw before volleying past Delany. A first league goal for the club was tarnished somewhat by the 18-year-old then being booked for celebrating in front of the Bohs fans who rained plastic bottles onto the pitch.
Shamrock Rovers - Hyland; Madden, Cornwall, Heaney, G. Brennan; Miele, Cregg, K. Brennan, D Clarke (T Clarke, 74); Dobbs (Boyd, 65), Shaw (McPhail, 81).
Bohemians - Delany; Hayes, Prendergast (Morris, 77), Mulcahy, Pender; D Byrne; Kelly (Ben Mohamed, 69), Buckley, Lopes, K Byrne; Akinade (Quigley, 66).
REF - P McLaughlin (Donegal)
McEneff leads Derry rout
Derry City 4 Longford Town 0
Derry City got back to winning ways when they cruised past bottom side Longford Town.
The hosts forced a number of clear-cut chances before taking the lead on 40 minutes when Kevin O'Connor handled Nathan Boyle's cross and Aaron McEneff made no mistake with the spot-kick.
Town miserable night got worse just before the break when O'Connor, who was cautioned over the penalty incident, was sent off after hacking down McEneff.
Derry doubled their advantage on 63 minutes when substitute Lukas Schubert controlled the ball inside the box before coolly slotting home.
Rory Patterson fired a penalty over the bar, but Derry did score a third minutes later as Patterson's lob was superbly kept out by Ryan Coulter but Barry McNamee was on hand to turn home the loose ball.
Patterson completed the scoring on 83 minutes, drilling the ball home from 14 yards.
DERRY CITY - Doherty, McDermott, Vemmelund, Barry, Jarvis; McEneff, McCormack; Curtis (Daniels 81), McNamee (Allan 84), Boyle (Schubert 61); Patterson.
LONGFORD TOWN - Coulter, Powell, Haverty, Hughes, Dillon (Gannon 68), O'Connor, Duffy (McGlynn H-T), Nkelu, Simon, Flynn, Dsane (O'Sullivan 77).
REF - R Harvey (Dublin).
Dundalk set to meet old foe if they progress
A reunion with familiar foes BATE Borisov will most likely await Dundalk in the Champions League if they overcome FH Hafnarfjordur in the second leg of the first qualifying round in Iceland next Wednesday.
Regular group stage participants BATE beat the League of Ireland champions in the first round of last season's competition but only after a slender first-leg win in Belarus.
The Belarusian outfit are well on their way to the next round, carrying a 2-0 advantage over SJK Seinajoki into the second leg, but Dundalk need to score on away soil to retain their ambitions after FH carved out a 1-1 draw at Oriel Park.
Assuming they see off Lincoln Red Imps, who beat them 1-0 in Gibraltar in the first leg, Celtic will face a step-up in class against either Lithuania's Zalgiris Vilnius or FC Astana of Khazakhstan.
In the Europa League, both St Patrick's Athletic and Cork City will be hopeful of progressing after earning 1-1 away draws on Thursday.
Should they complete the job, the Saints will meet either North Welsh side Connah Quay or FK Vojvodina from Serbia, while Cork are in line to face Belgian outfit Genk, who beat Buducnost Podgorica from Montenegro 2-0 in the first leg.
West Ham will play either Shakhtor Soligorsk (Belarus) or Domzale (Slovenia), Aberdeen are in the mix to play Maribor or Levski Sofia, Hibernian could face Hertha Berlin and Hearts, should they prevail, have Krasnodar lurking.