Gary Shaw’s late double spells trouble for Galway United
Aaron Greene screamer keeps Europe in sight for Bray Wanderers
Gary Shaw scored two late goals to give Shamrock Rovers the points away to Galway United. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho
Galway United 1 Shamrock Rovers 2
Gary Shaw fired two late goals as Shamrock Rovers claimed a precious away win at Eamonn Deacy Park.
Ronan Murray’s penalty gave United a first-half lead, but they couldn’t hold on in the second half as Shaw fired Rovers to a second win in three days.
In the early stages it was Rovers that looked the more dangerous side, and they almost took the led after four minutes, but Stephen Folan’s defensive header just crept over his own crossbar.
United had plenty of chances of their own in the first quarter, while Brandon Miele hit the side-net at the other end after 24 minutes.
But three minutes later United struck for the lead goal. Kevin Devaney did well down the right to dig out a cross, but Rovers defender David Webster was penalised for a handball, and Murray converted easily from the spot for a 1-0 half-time lead.
Rovers emerged early for the start of the second half and they were bright from the restart, but they were twice out of luck when Shaw blocked Conor Winn’s clearance but it just sailed over the bar.
But Shaw struck twice late on to consign United to a heart-breaking defeat and upset their hopes of avoiding the drop.
GALWAY UNITED: Winn; Byrne, Folan, Horgan; Devaney, Cawley (Sinnott, 60 mins), Hale, Ludden; Holohan, Murray; Ayunga (McCormack, 83 mins).
SHAMROCK ROVERS: Chencinski; Webster, Grace, Lopes, Clarke; Connolly (Doona 51), Finn, McAllister (King, 76 mins), Miele (O’Connor, 67 mins); Shaw, Burke.
Referee: Anthony Buttimer (Cork).
Bray Wanderers 2 Drogheda United 1
Hugh Douglas’s first goal of the season got Bray back in the hunt for Europe as Drogheda teeter towards Premier Division relegation.
Aaron Greene’s cracking second-half free-kick helped the Seagulls end their seven game winless streak at the Carlisle Grounds.
Although Chris Mulhall pulled one back, the Louth side are now 16 Premier Division games without a victory in the Premier Division.
After Gary McCabe’s 36th-minute free hit the bar, Douglas broke the deadlock when he headed in Kevin Lynch’s 37th-minute corner.
Wanderers went two-up five minutes after the interval. Greene notched his eighth goal of the campaign with stunning 20-yard free past a stationary Stephen McGuinness.
Yet, the away team pulled one back in the 67th minute. Seán Russell’s 20-yard free cannoned off the wall and Richie Purdy crossed low from the right with Mulhall flicking in from six-yards.
United had bossed the opening period with Conor Kenna twice clearing Mulhall after the Bray skipper’s eighth-minute defensive error.
Russell nearly equalised in the 44th minute as his free from the edge of the 18-yard box came back off the post and hit the in-rushing Mulhall before being scrambled clear.
BRAY WANDERERS: Cherrie; Douglas, Kenna, Clancy, Lynch (Ellis, 90 mins); Sullivan, Noone (Salmon, 69 mins); Brennan, McCabe, Moore (Marks, 85 mins); Greene.
DROGHEDA UNITED: McGuinness; Elsworthy, Dunne, Mulcahy, Kane; Hyland (Byrne, 61 mins), Purdy; Wixted (Masterson, 80 mins), Bayly, Russell (Doyle, 84 mins); Mulhall.
Referee: Ben Connolly (Dublin).