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Bohs get a Pat on the back

STRANGE for a team to be cheered off the field by their supporters after 'celebrating' a sixth successive game without scoring a goal.

But it's a sign of the times - hard times - that a scoreless draw at home to St Patrick's Athletic is a positive result for Bohemians as Aaron Callaghan's side finally picked up their first point of the season, ending a run of three straight league defeats.

Goals are still hard to come by for Bohs and it's now six games in all competitions without a goal, though they did come close to winning yesterday's Dublin derby as a late effort from Karl Moore came off the crossbar.

But the main thing to emerge from a dreadful game yesterday -- most TV viewers would surely have switched off at half-time and found something better to do as there was no entertainment at all to be gained from the affair -- was that Bohs no longer have zero points as they head into their next game, away to Shamrock Rovers on Friday.

"We're off the mark and that's the main thing," said Bohs veteran Dave Mulcahy. "We needed to get something out of the game, the last thing we wanted was to be heading to Tallaght next Friday to play Rovers and have no points on (the) board, so that draw will do our confidence the world of good.

"It really does hit your confidence when you're rooted to the bottom and have no points on board. Our heads were down in training during the week because we'd lost our last two games, so this draw will boost our confidence.

"We know we need to do better in terms of scoring goals and we probably need another striker. Dinny Corcoran is working his backside off up front but he needs some help.

"Keeping a clean sheet is huge for us. We were doing okay in a lot of games. We only lost to Derry and Sligo by one goal but we needed to have a clean sheet to get the season really started," added Mulcahy, an ex-Pats man who filled in as a midfielder and a centre-half yesterday.

Mulcahy admitted that the fare on offer in Dalymount yesterday did little to enhance the image of the league in front of the live TV cameras - Dalymount was a thrill-free zone for 90 dull minutes.

"Hopefully they'll leave that game out of the RTE archives," he joked. "But we're not worried about that, it's all about results.


"There are big changes taking place at this club. The manager is still building a team and still trying to find his best XI, so we have to cut our cloth to suit our measure."

The pitch seemed to unsettle Pats as the Inchicore side struggled to break down Bohs. Pats offered nothing at all in an incident-free first half - not a single attack of note from either side over 45 minutes - and stumbled in the second half.

Their best chance fell to sub Chris Fagan on 76 minutes after Greg Bolger delivered an excellent cross, but the former Bohs man mistimed his kick and swung at air. That miss could have cost Pats as Moore nearly nicked it with an 87th-minute strike that came off the underside of the crossbar.

"It was a horrible game and the pitch didn't help either side," said Fagan, who finally made his league debut for Pats after suspensions sidelined him for the first three games of the season.

"The pitch was a massive factor, it's so dry and bobbly. We were very disappointed in the dressing room after the game, that's the kind of game we need to be winning."