Cork City 4 St Patrick's Athletic 2: Cork City ensured they finished in the top half of the Airtricity League Premier Division as they beat champions St Patrick's Athletic at Turner's Cross last night.
Leading 3-0 after an excellent first-half performance, the hosts found themselves under more pressure in the second half and were hanging on as Ger O'Brien's 79th-minute goal made it 3-2 before Danny Morrissey wrapped things up in the final minute.
Such an outcome hadn't looked likely in the first period, when Cork blitzed the visitors, who had received a guard of honour onto the pitch. After Danny Morrissey had had two early chances for City, his namesake Gearóid put them ahead in the 18th minute, beating Brendan Clarke with a low 20-yard shot after exchanging passes with Ciarán Kilduff.
While Pat's winger Conan Byrne was just over with a free kick, they were offering little overall and it was no surprise when Daryl Horgan put Cork two ahead, profiting from Ian Turner's nice reverse pass on the half-hour. Then, shortly before half-time, Kilduff got his 11th goal in 13 games after good work by John Kavanagh.
The addition of Anto Flood up front with Christy Fagan improved Pat's after half-time and Chris Forrester pulled a goal back from a Jake Kelly corner. After Danny Morrissey was unlucky for Cork, hitting the side-netting from a tight angle, O'Brien ensured a nervy closing 10 minutes with a 30-yard drive, but Morrissey had the final say.
CORK CITY: McNulty; Kavanagh (N Horgan 73), D Murray, Dennehy, Dunleavy; Turner, Healy, G Morrissey, D Horgan; Kilduff (Kenny 90), D Morrissey (Duggan 90).
ST PATRICK'S ATHLETIC: Clarke; O'Brien, Browne, Kenna, Bermingham; Brennan, McFaul (Flood half-time), Forrester; Byrne (Price 53), Fagan, Kavanagh (Kelly half-time).
Referee: A Kelly (Cork).