Dundalk put their recent poor league form as Sean Hoare’s early header helped them see off Waterford FC at Oriel Park last night to book their place in the second round draw for the Extra.ie FAI Cup at midday today.
Both managers made six changes to their team from the weekend’s league matches and it was one of Vinny Perth’s who popped up with the opening goal on 17 minutes. Stefan Colovic’s inswinging free kick from the left was inch perfect for the unmarked Hoare to head home his first FAI Cup goal since the 2018 final.
The Blues thought they had equalised two minutes later when John Martin looped a header over Gary Rogers but the offside flag denied them what would ultimately prove to be their best chance of the half.
At the other end, Chris Shields went close with a long range effort for Dundalk on 21 minutes before Tadgh Ryan denied Michael Duffy with a fine stop 10 minutes later after he was played in by Brian Gartland’s ball over the top.
The home side started the second half well with Will Patching curling an effort just over the bar on 48 minutes before Colovic fired just wide from the edge of the area two minutes later.
Four changes midway through the half saw Waterford pose more of an attacking threat but a Will FitzGerald effort that was deflected over on 71 minutes was their best opening of this period.
Six minutes later at the other end Duffy’s pull back found substitute Sean Gannon but his effort was turned around the post by Ryan.
Waterford did have two good chances after that to equalise but Michael O’Connor fluffed a good chance on 81 minutes before Sobowale flashed a left foot effort to the right and wide a minute later.
The sides will meet again at Oriel Park in the league on Friday night.