Champions Dundalk keep up pursuit of Cork City

A number of crucial saves from St Patrick’s Athletic goalkeeper Conor O’Malley in vain

David McMillan celebrates scoring Dundalk’s second goal in their win over St Pat’s. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

David McMillan celebrates scoring Dundalk’s second goal in their win over St Pat’s. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

 

St Patrick’s Athletic 0 Dundalk 2

Goals from Michael Duffy and David McMillan gave Dundalk the points as they continue their pursuit of runaway leaders Cork City at the top of the Premier Division table.

A crowd of 1,436 saw Dundalk’s Stephen O’Donnell have the first chance of the night on 12 minutes, with a low drive from the right which Pat’s goalkeeper Conor O’Malley saved with ease.

Dundalk were much the better of the two sides as the half progressed and O’Malley was beaten on 21 minutes when Duffy’s brilliant free kick flashed past the Pat’s wall and into the top left corner.

O’Malley then made two vital saves to keep Pat’s in the game. Firstly, on 32 minutes he denied Patrick McEleney, who had been played in by Duffy, and then a minute later he saved an O’Donnell effort with his foot.

Pat’s started the second half well and on 48 minutes Kurtis Byrne tried his luck from the right of the box but was denied by Gary Rogers in the Dundalk goal.

At the other end McEleney went close to increasing Dundalk’s lead with a rasping left-footed shot on 57 minutes that flashed narrowly wide of the right hand post. Then McMillan had another shot on the hour-mark but O’Malley got down well to save.

But McMillan was rewarded with a goal that his work-rate deserved on 68 minutes. He received the ball and turned before shooting from the edge of the box with his strike squeezing past O’Malley.

St Patrick’s Athletic: O’Malley; Barker, Peers, Feely, Bermingham; Cregg (Kelly 65 mins), Desmond (A O’Hanlon 74 mins); K Byrne (C Byrne 80 mins), Markey, Lunney; Fagan.

Dundalk: Rogers; Gannon, Barrett, Vemmelund, Massey; Shields, O’Donnell (Benson 51 mins); Duffy (Clifford 87 mins), McEleney, McGrath; McMillan (Kilduff 84 mins).

Referee: Sean Grant (Wexford).

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