Shamrock Rovers eased to a comfortable 3–0 victory over Cork City in the final match of the League season at the Tallaght Stadium. The Hoops were given a perfect tune-up for the Cup final as goals from Jack Byrne, Lee Grace and Graham Burke saw off
Shamrock Rovers picked up their first Premier Division victory in six on Monday night with an encouraging performance against champions Cork.
The Hoops took a two goal lead into break, after goals from Burke and Boyle, and Roberto Lopes put the result beyond doubt on the hour mark. Cork never got going, as they move off the summit behind Dundalk.
It’s a first loss for the them in the league since April 4th, but a third away defeat of the season. Rovers made the perfect start. With less than three minutes gone, Grahame Burke found himself in space thirty yards from goal.
He let fly, hitting the ball across Mark McNulty, and into the top left corner of the Cork Goal. The hosts were on top, and they doubled their lead in the 24th minute. Burke was involved again, this time whipping in a corner from the right.
It went to the front post, and Ethan Boyle got a touch ahead of a scrum of players to poke the ball to the net. Cork had their chances to get back into the game, but Kevin Horgan was in imperious form for Rovers.
He saved at close range on the half-hour, after Garry Buckley had gotten on the end of a long-range free-kick. Then he made an amazing double save from Barry McNamee and Graham Cummins on the stroke of half-time, to preserve the two goal advantage.
The second was truly unbelievable, as he re-adjusted quickly to make the pointblank stop. John Caulfield brought Jimmy Keohane and Karl Sheppard on at the break, but the points were safe for Rovers on the hour.
A free-kick from the right touchline was headed on by Joey O’Brien, and Lopes was at the back post to poke it home. Stephen Bradley will hope the result can bring the supporters back on board, and kick start their season.