Late Dundalk goal puts Cork's coronation on hold and keeps title race alive
Dundalk 1 Bray Wanderers 0
Dundalk’s three-year reign as SSE Airtricity League champions will go on for another 72 hours at least thanks to Michael Duffy’s late winner against ten-man Bray Wanderers at Oriel Park.
Stephen Kenny’s side knew that they needed a win to have any hope of keeping the champagne corks from popping in Cork and Duffy’s 87th-minute drive, coupled with John Caulfield’s side dropping points against Bohemians in Dublin, means that yet another title party has been postponed on Leeside.
Dundalk striker David McMillan turned Hugh Douglas inside out only to see his toe-poke saved by Peter Cherrie.
Two of Dundalk’s youngsters almost combined for the opener in the 39th minute with Carlton Ubaezuono picking out Jake O’Connor at the near post but his chested effort came back off the upright and the sides went in scoreless at the interval.
Bray were left to play the last half-an-hour with ten men after Ryan Brennan was stupidly sent off for two bookings in quick succession, right in front of his manager Harry Kenny.
Dundalk pushed for the breakthrough and Duffy collected a Jamie McGrath pass to smash home, cutting the gap at the top to six points in the process.
DUNDALK – Rogers; Gannon, Gartland, Hoare, Grimes; Shields, O’Connor (O’Keefe 69); Duffy, McGrath, Ubaezuono (Benson 56); McMillan.
BRAY WANDERERS – Cherrie; Buckley, Douglas, Kenna, Moore; Brennan, McCabe, Sullivan, Noone, Marks; Greene.
REFEREE – S Grant