St Patrick’s Athletic take points from re-arranged fixture
Finn Harps unlucky once more as their poor record against the Dublin outfit continues
St Patrick’s were 2-1 winners over Finn Harps on Monday night. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho
Finn Harps 1 St Patrick’s Athletic 2
St Patrick’s Athletic maintained their wonderful recent record over Finn Harps as they took the three points from their trip to Finn Park on Monday night.
The Saints went into this re-arranged fixture having lost only twice against the Donegal club in their last 25 meetings.
But the scoreline was flattering as Harps were the better side for long periods, and the Saints had to survive a final flurry after a late Kevin McHugh penalty set up an exciting finish.
Harps, with influential midfielder Sean Houston back in their line-up after injury, gradually came into the game but found the St Patrick’s defence in stubborn mood.
Houston was tormenting the visitors and on 55 minutes he fired across the face of the goal after a great run stemming from Tony McNamee.
Backed by the vocal home support, Harps sensed a breakthrough and swept forward with renewed confidence as they sought their third home win of the campaign.
Ryan Curran smacked a shot off the crossbar on 63 minutes as St Patrick’s survived a tricky spell.
The visitors then snatched the lead against the run of play as Conan Byrne floated in a 69th minute corner and goalkeeper Richard Brush appeared to misjudge the flight of the ball as defender Packie Mailey put it into his own net under pressure from Sean Hoare.
Harps battled back and Damien McNulty had a shot cleared off the line, only for the Saints to add another on 78 minutes as Timlin burst through to slot the ball past Brush.
Harps finally got the goal they had worked so hard for on 89 minutes, through a Kevin McHugh penalty - but from here it was too little too late.
Harps boss Ollie Horgan was sent to the stands as tempers boiled over before the final whistle.
Finn Harps: Brush; McNulty, Mailey, Cowan, Coll; Boyle (Funston 52 mins), Harkin, Houston, McNamee; Curran, Scully.
St Patrick’s Athletic: Clarke; Barker, Hoare, D. Dennehy (McGuinness 61 mins), Bermingham; Byrne, Cawley, McEleney, B, Dennehy; Timlin, Fagan.
Referee: B Connolly (Dublin).