Debut delight as Moore bangs in a hat-trick to put 10-man Longford Town to the sword in a 6-1 rout.
With so much on the line, a cagey opening was understandable but it was the away that settled quickest and looked the more threatening.
Jamie Doyle, who looked like a man utterly possessed to score against his former side, was denied brilliantly by the feet of Dean Delaney on a couple of occasions. The most Sam Verdon also missed a guilt edged chance from a corner, rising highest and unmarked but just not getting enough purchase on his header.
Somewhat against the run of play Shels did what Longford couldn’t and that was break the deadlock. A devilishly, left footed inswinging free kick from Lorcan Fitzgerald was flicked in by Dave Mulcahy, with the veteran sharply getting across the front post.
The home sides lead didn’t last long and just five minutes into the second half it was level. Michael McDonnell did superbly at the back post to nod the ball back into the danger area and Verdon reacted quickest to bundle the ball home.
The Delaney–Doyle ding-dong battle continued into the second half with the big striker turning sharply in the box. Doyle must have thought he scored when he reversed his left footed strike to the near post but the Shels stopper got down to his left side to make a magnificent save.
The hosts regained the lead when Karl Moore smashed home for a debut goal after brilliant work on the right flank from James English who’s cross / shot was only half cleared.
Two quickly became three when Moore supplied David O’Sullivan with an inch perfect through ball and the Red’s talisman slotted past the helpless Michael Kelly. Before the ball fell to Moore the ball seemed to deflect off referee, John McLoughlin, which had the visitors incensed The frustration boiled over as Jamie Doyle saw red for a reaction to a foul given against him moments later.
Moore grabbed his second and third of the game shortly after, as Shels made the man advantage count. The first of the quick fire two was with a well taken header following a neat one two between James English and JR Wilson down the right flank, almost immediately followed with a calm finish following James English blocked effort.
There was still time for English to deservedly get on the scoresheet from the penalty spot when substitute Greg Moorehouse was brought down just before the final whistle.
Shelbourne FC: Dean Delaney, John Ross Wilson, Lorcan Fitzgerald, Aidan Collins, Dave Mulcahy, Mark Hughes, Adam Evans, Karl Moore, Gavin Boyne, David O’Sullivan, James English
Subs: Reece McEnteer, Cian Kavanagh, Greg Moorehouse, James O’Brien, Shane Farrell, DayleRooney, Lee Steacy
Longford Town: Michael Kelly, Shane Elworthy, Tristan Noack-Hofmann, Daniel O’Reilly, Jamie Doyle, Michael McDonnell, Aodh Dervin, Jamie Hollywood, Sam Verdon, Karl Chambers, Dylan McGlade
Subs: Evan O’Connor, Dean Zambra, Dean Dillon, Darren Meenan, Eoin O’Neill, Warren Mitchell, BenKelly
Referee: John McLoughlin