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Madden brace buries bus!

BANGOR CELTIC.......................2

DUBLIN BUS............................0

A couple of first-half goals from Keith Madden handed Bangor Celtic three valuable points as the champions glided by Dublin Bus to keep up the pressure on neighbours Crumlin United at the top of the table.

The timing of Madden's goals couldn't have been better for the Celts.

The striker netted the opener just before the half-hour mark just as the Bus were starting to build a bit of momentum and Madden added a second right on the stroke of half-time to deflate the visitors completely.



Ambition

For all the early ambition and intention, neither side could muster up any significant chances until Graham Doyle shook off the attentions of his marker on 19 minutes to create the first decent opportunity, but the Bus striker drilled the ball over the crossbar from 15 yards out.

Celtic continued searching for their rhythm and just before the half hour mark they finally clicked into gear.

In-form Madden sprung the offside trap, raced clear and then calmly clipped the ball over the advancing Declan Woods and into the back of the net.

Bus hit back straight from the kick-off as Gareth Kenna got free down the left wing and picked Chris Mahon out with a curling cross, unfortunately for the midfielder he could only direct his header into the arms of a grateful Phillip Casey.

As the half wore on Celtic started to dig holes in the Bus defence to create some chances and only a couple of brave saves from Woods kept the champions out.

First midfielder Brian Mooney got free at the back post, but his low drive was turned around the post by Woods, and then moments later Lar Dunne snaked his way by his marker only for the Bus netminder to block away his shot from a tight angle.

The Bus defence was creaking and with seconds remaining in the half their resistance was broken when Madden added a second.

The Celtic striker managed to wriggle a yard of space just outside of the box to get a shot away and his effort took a deflection off the leg of a defender, floated over the outstretched arms of Woods and into the top corner.

Mooney went close to adding to Celtic's tally just after the restart as he skipped by Woods but he drove his shot wide. Just before the hour mark Dublin Bus' task became mission impossible when Geoff Doyle was flashed a red card for a late tackle on Kevin Dempsey.

The game went flat following Doyle's dismissal but in the final stages the home side went looking to add to their tally and while Declan Carroll, Robbie Collins and Mooney all went close they failed to extend their lead.

The wayward finishing of the champions kept the Bus on life support and still in the game right up until the final whistle.

BANGOR: Phillip Casey; Paul Gannon, Kevin Dempsey, Derek Prendergast, Adam Mitchell, Terry Gleeson, Mark Cullen, Lar Dunne, Keith Madden, Robbie Collins, Brian Mooney. Subs: Declan Carroll (for Madden 58mins), David White (for Mitchell 86mins), Phillip Downey, Joe Courtney, Paul Devlin, Alan Wilson.

DUBLIN BUS: Declan Woods, Ken Flood, Mark Rutherford, Geoff Doyle, Gary Durnin, Ian Maher, Ken Tougher, Chris Mahon, Graham Doyle, Eoin Lannigan, Gareth Kenna. Subs: Phillip Sheppard (for Lannigan 60mins), Colm Nataro (for Tougher 60mins), Jay O'Hara, Neil Stone, Neil Fleming, Wayne Greaves, Mark Rowntree.

Referee: John Glynn.


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