Finn Harps 0, Wexford Youths 1: Substitute Aidan Keenan headed in a dramatic 85th-minute winner as Wexford Youths bagged three crucial points in their battle to avoid the drop as they overcame Finn Harps at Finn Park.
Substitute Aidan Keenan headed in a dramatic 85th-minute winner as Wexford Youths bagged three crucial points in their battle to avoid the drop as they overcame Finn Harps at Finn Park.
Wexford went into this game on the back of six straight defeats and were in dire need of a reversal in fortunes.
Wexford looked the livelier side after a combative opening spell and Harps’ netminder Richard Brush had to be alert to a number of probing crosses.
But on 23 minutes Harps missed a great opportunity to go in front when Wexford lost possession and Ruairi Keating nipped in, only for his control to let him down on the edge of the box.
Wexford’s danger man Danny Furlong then threatened to open the scoring on 36 minutes as he latched onto a long ball and raced into the box, but Keith Cowan’s tackle was timed to perfection.
Raymond Foy then let fly with a speculative 35-yard effort on 38 minutes as the game really began to open up.
Harps created the first chance of the second half, with Sean Houston’s drive being fumbled by Graham Doyle at the expense of a corner.
Andy Mulligan then tested Finn Harps with a free as Wexford put the Harps defence under a sustained period of pressure.
The physical nature of the game resurfaced in the final 10 minutes as Harps were constantly put on the back foot and Furlong gave them another scare with a free just over the target.
Wexford broke the deadlock through Keenan following a free but Harps then squandered a couple of late chances to salvage a point.
Brush; McNulty (Boyle, 7 mins), Mailey, Cowan, Coll; Curran, Foy (McHugh, 84 mins), Molloy, Houston, Hanlon (Funston, 77mins); Keating.
Doyle; McCabe, Delaney, Last, Grace; Dunne, Bonner (Dempsey 90), Kenny, Ledwith (Friel, 6 mins); Mulligan, Furlong.
R Matthews (Westmeath).
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