The Gypsies bounced back from last week's bitter Extra.ie FAI Cup semi-final defeat to rivals, Shamrock Rovers, with a hugely important and hard faugh 1-0 over Cork City, thanks to Derek Pender's second-half winner. It was all the home side in the
The Gypsies bounced back from last week's bitter Extra.ie FAI Cup semi-final defeat to rivals, Shamrock Rovers, with a hugely important and hard faugh 1-0 over Cork City, thanks to Derek Pender's second-half winner.
It was all the home side in the opening exchanges, Keith Ward was dictating play from the middle, and the Danny Grant versus Colm Horgan battle began to take shape.
The closest either side came to breaking the deadlock came after just 15 minutes, when, the smallest player on the pitch, Ross Tierney turned a header from a Keith Ward corner on target, only for Tadhg Ryan to smartly tip over.
City, who have failed to score in their last three, began to grow into the game and went close from distance on a number of occassions, as the belief began to flow into the visitors.
Daire O’Connor missed the far top corner by inches with an effort from the right hand side of the area, quickly followed by Karl Sheppard and Eoghan Stokes vollying just off target.
The break-through eventually came just two minutes after the interval in the form of one of the unlikeliest scorers, in the unlikeliest of fashions. Derek Pender linked up cleverly with Luke Wade-Slater on the right wing, before clipping a cross to the far-post.
But under no pressure, stopper Tadhg Ryan caught the ball cleanly, before somehow getting himself tangled in knots and as he fell to the ground, allowed the ball to spill over the line.
City were still very much in the game and almost responded immediately through ex-Bohs man Eoghan Stokes, who’s brilliantly taken first time volley narrowly missed the far post.
Under the watchful eye of Ireland boss Mick McCarthy, the encounter seemed to peter out as Keith Long’s men seemed content with the one goal, and with results going their way at both Richmond Park and the Ryan McBride Brandywell Stadium, the Gypsies have put themselves in a fantastic position for a European spot with just three games remaining