Having been born into a house located just opposite the present day Tallaght Stadium before being brought up in Knocklyon, had things transpired a little differently for Brian Gartland he could have been playing for Shamrock Rovers at the Aviva Stadium on Sunday.
Two goals inside the opening 33 minutes from Rafael Ratão and Aleksandar Čavrić killed the game as a contest and while the Lilywhites never gave up, even briefly threatening a mini-revival when Michael Duffy pulled one back midway through the second half, this ultimately proved a challenge too far.
Fr Mark O’Hagan, parish priest of St Patrick’s parish, Dundalk, has said it was the frightened faces and crying children that concerned him most on Sunday after a man drove through a crowded graveyard.
The casual channel-hopper who alights on RTÉ 2 tomorrow afternoon might be forgiven for complaining about yet another repeat but, for knowledgeable football folk, any sense of deja vu will be more than offset by the compelling prospect of another collision between the two juggernauts of the Irish game.
Dundalk effectively dethroned champions Cork City at Turner’s Cross on a night when an early goal from man of the match Chris Shields was enough to give the Lilywhites the crucial victory their textbook away performance thoroughly deserved.