Dundalk turn on the style to see off Shamrock Rovers

Stephen Kenny’s Lilywhites stay top as they reel off four second half goals in Tallaght

Shamrock Rovers 2 Dundalk 5

Dundalk produced a stunning second half display at Tallaght Stadium to remain in pole position in the SSE Airtricity League Premier Division.

Following a slow opening that saw them leak an early goal to Shamrock Rovers striker Dan Carr, Dundalk responded through the in form Patrick Hoban. With momentum on their side, Stephen Kenny's men pushed forward after the resumption to comfortably defeat their south Dublin opponents.

Although Rovers opted to rest Graham Burke - who is expected to pick up a second Republic of Ireland cap in Saturday's friendly against the USA - it took them just four minutes to break the deadlock.


After a cross by former Dundalk midfielder Ronan Finn diverted off the boot of Brian Gartland, Gary Rogers produced a stunning one-handed save.

Before the Lilywhites 'keeper could return to his feet, Carr was on hand to finish. Dundalk eventually equalised with eight minutes remaining in the opening period, however, as Hoban claimed his 15th league goal of the season via a precise Michael Duffy delivery.

While Dundalk had been far from their best up to this point, they ultimately turned on the style to see off the Rovers challenge.

When he rose above a host of bodies to meet a Robbie Benson free-kick on the hour mark, Daniel Cleary found the bottom right-hand corner of the Rovers goal. The centre-half was soon joined on the scoresheet by fellow defender Dane Massey - who found a way past Tomer Chencinski with a long-distance drive.

Roberto Lopes fired back with a 71st-minute finish at the opposite end, but it only offered false hope to the Rovers faithful. The outstanding Benson restored Dundalk's two-goal cushion straight from the restart, before subsequently adding his second to ease the six-time champions over the line.

SHAMROCK ROVERS: Chencinski; Boyle, Lopes, Grace, Byrne; G Bolger, Coustrain, A Bolger (B Kavanagh, 70 mins), Finn (McAllister, 46 mins), S Kavanagh; Carr (Shaw, 25 mins).

DUNDALK: Rogers; Hoare, Gartland, Cleary, Massey; Shields, Benson; Connolly (Adorjan, 67 mins), McGrath (Chvedukas, 86 mins), Duffy; Hoban (Tagbajumi, 87 mins).

Referee: B Connolly (Dublin).

Attendance: 2,799.