Dundalk 1 - Waterford Utd 0: A 94th minute own goal from Garry Comerford sent Dundalk soaring above Waterford into second place in the table after a dramatic finish at Oriel Park last night.
It looked like Stephen Kenny’s side were on course for a fourth 0-0 result in six matches until the unfortunate Comerford headed Michael Duffy’s cross into his own net deep in added time.
On a night where Dundalk goalkeeper Gary Rogers celebrated his 500th league appearance, it looked like his opposite number Lawrence Vigouroux would steal the show as he pulled off a string of fine stops to frustrate the home side.
The result sees the Lilywhites leapfrog Waterford into second place, just a point behind reigning champions Cork City. It was a real sickner for Alan Reynolds’ visitors who had battled hard throughout and could have won it themselves with chances in either half.
It was the visitors who looked the more threatening in the early stages with Derek Daly passing up a big chance to fire his side in front on 17 minutes. Sander Puri beat the advancing Rogers to a ball into the box to inadvertently set up his colleague but the effort went over the bar as Dundalk defenders got back to cover the goal line.
Chris Shields was then forced to make a superb block to deny Puri two minutes later after the winger had been played in on the left by Gavan Holohan’s clver chip.
Stanley Aborah then had two efforts at goal in quick succession on 25 minutes. The first was blocked down before his follow up, after the home side failed to clear, floated to the left and wide.
Dundalk grew into the game and conjured up their best opening on the half hour mark. Jamie McGrath’s cross from the right was laid off by Pat Hoban at the near post but Vigouroux somehow got down low to his left to keep out the close range effort from Karolis Chvedukas.
The on loan Swindon Town goalkeeper then came to his side’s rescue again on 36 minutes when he brilliantly palmed away Dane Massey’s snap shot from the edge of the area to keep the sides scoreless at the break.
Vigouroux had to be alert to keep it that way two minutes after the restart when Michael Duffy’s cross deflected off John Kavanagh forcing the keeper into an unexpected save at his near post.
The keeper then had a couple of let-offs. The first arrived on 50 minutes when he failed to hold a shot from Duffy but Massey was unable to turn in the loose ball as he could only fire over on the stretch on his weaker right foot. Then, four minutes later Vigouroux spilled a shot from McGrath. Hoban put the loose ball in the net but the offside flag was up.
Hoban would go close again on 71 minutes when he headed just over from substitute Ronan Murray’s cross but Waterford would threaten themselves two minutes later when substitute John Martin broke through only to be denied by Rogers.
Rogers; Gannon, Cleary, Hoare, Massey; Shields (O’Donnell 84), Chevedukas (Murray 71), McGrath (Tagbajumi 79), Benson, Duffy; Hoban.
Vigouroux; Kavanagh, Browne, Webster, Barnett; Aborah (Keegan 76), Comerford; Daly (Martin 66), Holohan, Puri; O’Halloran. Referee: R Harvey (Dublin)
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