[team1]St Patrick’s Athletic[/team1][score1]2[/score1]
An outstanding strike from Chris Forrester signalled the end of St Patrick’s Athletic’s goal drought as they beat Dublin rivals Shelbourne at Richmond Park to record their first win in seven games.
Stephen O’Donnell’s Saints hadn’t scored in over 600 minutes of football prior to this fully deserved victory, leapfrogging Shelbourne up to fifth place in the Premier Division table.
Without a win now in seven games, third from bottom Shelbourne remain just four points ahead of Finn Harps who host bottom side Cork City on Sunday afternoon.
In an energetic opening, Shelbourne threatened first after five minutes when stretching St Pat’s on the counter.
Gary Deegan nicked the ball off Forrester to send midfield partner Sean Quinn surging forward.
Quinn found Denzil Fernandes on the right before then meeting the cross with a downward header that Brendan Clarke acrobatically turned round a post with a fine save.
St Pat’s responded well, their third corner of the game from Forrester finding the head of Georgie Kelly to work Shelbourne goalkeeper Colin McCabe at the near post.
Moments later Jason McClelland wasn’t too far over the top with a shot from distance.
The sustained pressure paid dividends with a cracking lead goal for the home side on 17 minutes.
McClelland took a quick throw to Forrester who controlled the ball with one touch before unleashing a stunning left-foot drive to the far top corner of McCabe’s net for a sublime goal.
Shelbourne had to work hard to play their way into the game, troubling St Pat’s on 35 minutes.
Fernandes and midfielder Mark Byrne, on his first start, worked a one-two down the inside right channel with Clarke bravely saving at the winger’s feet.
But it was St Pat’s who deservedly doubled their 10 minutes into the second half.
Robbie Benson’s deflected shot won a corner which he subsequently whipped into the near post where Rory Feely out-jumped Dan Byrne to power a header to the net.
A mistake by Oscar Brennan almost led to a third St Pat’s goal but for McCabe saving well from Kelly.