Bohemians hosted relegation threatened Longford town at a chilly Dalymount Park this evening with top scorer Kurtis Byrne, proving the match winner again just like he did on Monday night.
Fresh from having recently defeated Longford’s relegation rivals, Wexford Youths, the Gypsies were looking to go 5th in the league in front of the expectant home fans, but Longford weren’t here just to make up the numbers putting on a spirited display.
The game started in typically frenetic fashion with both teams desperately looking to get the upper hand. All the action was down the Bohs left hand side with Jake Kelly seeing a lot of the ball and, as for the visitor’s, right winger Don Cowan looked like the main attacking threat.
The first chance of the game finally came in the 20th minute and fell to Kelly, who was unlucky to see his looping header just go over Ryan Coulters cross bar from a floated Kurtis Byrne cross.
There weren’t many clear-cut chances of note in the opening half hour but the hosts began getting on top with some nice sustained bouts of pressure albeit not looking threatening. But the home fans frustration didn’t last too long though when the deadlock was finally broken on the 33rd minute.
Man of the moment, Jake Kelly delivered a dangerously whipped in-swinging free kick from the right side and looked to have gone straight in without a touch but Kurtis Byrne, like all good forwards, claimed he got the faintest of touches to grab his ninth league goal of the season.
The second half started much the same as the first, Bohs looked neat and tidy in possession while the visitors, despite their hard work and endeavor, lacked a bit of quality in possession to sustain any pressure.
The game fell into a lull with neither team creating openings so both managers decided to utilize their benches to inject a bit of life into the game but it failed to materialize. A scuffed effort from Kurtis Byrne followed a David O’Sullivan header just over as the game threatened to come to life.
Just as the game was drifting to a close, Longford decided to go route one and push man mountain Yann Mvita up front as an emergency forward. The big man made his presence felt winning some flick ons, but the Bohs defence managed to deal with the threat and hold on for the win.
Longford will be glad to see the back of Bohs this season as the Gypsies maintained their good run of form against them, with Bohs having not conceded in either game this season, a 2-0 win at home and a 1-0 victory away.
Up next for the Gypsies is a tough away trip to the Carlisle Grounds were they face a spirited Bray Wanders. Meanwhile Longford host high flying Derry City at home, and with time running out to pick up valuable points in order to pull Wexford youths closer, its not looking good for Alan Mathews troops.
Bohemian FC: Dean Delaney, Derek Pender, Lorcan Fitzgerald, Roberto Lopes, Derek Prendergast, Keith Buckley, Kurtis Byrne, Jake Kelly (Marco Chindea 90+1’), Paddy Kavanagh (Eoin Wearen 75’), Dean O’Halloran (Mark Quigley 70’), Ian Morris
Subs: Dean Mahon, Dan Byrne, Stephen Best, Dylan Hayes
Longford Town: Ryan Coulter, Jamie Mulhall (Noel Haverty 45’), Conor Powell, Kealan Dillon (David O’Sullivan 66’), Peter McGlynn, Don Cowan (Kaleem Simon 72’) Kevin O’Connor, Yann Mvita, Pat Flynn, Philip Gannon, Eddie Dsane
Subs: Paul Skinner, Mark Hughes, Gaius Makouta, Rhys Gorman
Booked: Noel Haverty, Eddie Dsane, Roberto Lopes
Referee: Graham Kelly