St. Patrick’s Athletic victorious in first Dublin Derby.

St. Patrick’s Athletic were comfortable winners on Monday night at Richmond road against 10 men Bohemian F.C with a 3 – 0 win. Goals from Mark Timlin, Christy Fagan and Billy Dennehy saw The Saints win their first home league game of this SSE Airtricity League campaign.

A cold Richmond Park in Inchicore was the venue for this meeting. Two teams looking to kick start their season after both were successful 1 – 0 winners in their previous outings. Prior to this game, Bohs had not beaten St. Pat’s in the last three league meetings and their hopes of changing this statistic took a turn for the worst when on the fifth minute Pat’s left-back Ian Bermingham broke down the left hand side before crossing the ball to Mark Timlin who met it on the head at the back post. It was clear to see from the start that Pat’s were going to target Bohs right back and captain Derek Pender, and again this is where their second goal came from. With 13 minutes on the clock, Billy Dennehy managed to wriggle away from two opposition players following a throw in before looping the ball over the sluggish Bohs defence where Christy Fagan was on hand to double the Saints advantage with another header to get his third in as many games and 50th for the Saints.

Despite going two goals behind early on, the travelling Bohemian supporters were trying their best to give the players that extra push. However the players were not responding to the crowds cry.

Bohemian striker Ismahil Akinade was somewhat isolated throughout the first half with their game plan of continually playing the long ball up to him. Although Akinade won most battles in the air, his midfield teammates, for the most part had not kept up with play. On the occasions that the Bohs team put a few moves together, nothing troubled Brendan Clarke in the Pats goal bar a few shots which were relatively comfortable. Ex Pats player Mark Quigley was one of the few players that looked threatening for Bohemians. Consistently showing for the ball, unlike many other teammates, he had a free kick saved by Clarke in the opposition’s goal on the 24th minute. Apart from this opening, the devoted Bohs fans had nothing to cheer about during the first half.

Second Half

It was evident that Keith Long was not happy with his team’s first half performance and there would be no doubt that he let his players know exactly that in the dressing room. Bohs came out flying following the interval and this seemed to shock Liam Buckley’s Pat’s team as they appeared to sit back and protect their 2 – 0 lead. This strategy did not go down well with the home supporters with the odd shout at Pat’s captain Ger O’Brien to get his team playing again. But once more, the Bohs players just lacked that composure in the final third and after starting the second half the brighter of the two, Pat’s advantage did not look under threat.

This frustration may have got the better of Akinade when on the 66th minute he was sent for an early shower after a second yellow card. This unnecessary red card seemed to end any chance Bohs had of achieving a positive result.

Following this red card, Pat’s certainly gained control once again with the possession levels rising due to the midfield presence from ex- Irish international Keith Tracey. Then with only one minute remaining in normal time, good build up play and great work down the right hand side by substitute Conan Byrne landed the ball onto man of the match performer Billy Dennehy’s head for the third headed goal in this contest. A goal which was thoroughly deserved following a hard worked performance.

St Pat’s manager Liam Buckley seemed pleased with his sides performances following the game by saying: “I thought tonight the first half we played better than Bohs tonight, second half was a little bit iffy as it was in Longford but I’m just pleased that we’re picking up a few points bearing in mind the first result here against Galway and at times in the first half I thought we linked and passed it quite well, we stretched them quite well, and hopefully we will get better.”

Also Buckley gave the supporters an added bonus about talking on the topic of injuries, he stated: “Nothing tonight, no. Nothing major.”

So what’s next for both teams? St Patrick’s Athletic are involved in another Dublin Derby this time away to Shamrock Rovers. Liam Buckley’s team will have all the confidence following this result and looking to end Rovers winning start to the campaign.

While Bohemian’s welcome a struggling Wexford Youths side to Dalymount Park, this must win game for Keith Long’s team after a disappointing display at Richmond Road, can’t come quick enough.

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