The opening weekend of the League of Ireland has produced some unlikely results and some controversial decisions which have decided games. New players were on show for each club, so fans had plenty of new faces to get used to. Some of these new players turned into heroes while others will have to put in a lot of work to get into the supporters good books after the first series of fixtures.
Bohemians 1 – 0 Sporting Fingal
The curtain raiser for the new season turned into a very evenly matched game with the winning goal coming courtesy of Killian Brennan. The midfielder coolly converted from the penalty spot after a controversial decision from Derek Tomney left the newly promoted, Sporting Fingal in a foul mood. However, Sporting can take a lot of positives from the game and will be hoping their work rate and all round ability will see them win more games than they lose this season. Bohs will be looking for an improved performance next time out in the Setanta Cup against Glentoran.
Bray Wanderers 0 – 1 Dundalk
Another closely contested game took place at The Carlisle Grounds. Many expect Bray to struggle this season but on the evidence of this performance they may prove a difficult team to beat. Dundalk had to wait till the 90th minute to secure victory with, new signing, Garry Breen scoring with a header from a JJ Meligan corner. Dundalk will be hoping to push on from this victory and begin a run of good form which could see them challenge for a European place come the end of the season.
Drogheda 0 – 3 UCD
UCD are the unlikely leaders of the League of Ireland after this display which raised a few eyebrows. A double from Ciaran Kilduff and a goal from Greg Bolger was more than enough to see off a Drogheda side who must now be wondering how they will cope with sterner opposition throughout the remainder of the season.
St.Pats 2 – 0 Galway United
A comprehensive victory for Pete Mahon’s side thanks to goals from Ryan Guy and Alex Williams, sees the Inchicore club towards the top of the division. Ryan Guy opened the scoring before Stephen O’Donnell got his marching orders for two yellow cards after 17 minutes. Alex Williams completed the scoring on 68 with a powerful strike from 10 yards out. St.Pats will be delighted with this win and could ave scored more than two, whereas, Galway and Sean Connor will be hoping to improve their fortunes next time out against Bray Wanderers.
Sligo Rovers 1 – 1 Shamrock Rovers
Shamrock Rovers travelled to The Showgrounds hoping to pick up all 3 points to send a message to current champions Bohemians, however, the Tallaght based club only left with a single point after coming from behind in a close encounter between the League runner ups and the beaten FAI cup finalists. Eoin Doyle opened the scoring, against his former club after 22 minutes for Paul Cook’s side. Rovers responded in the 64 minute, when new signing James Chambers converted from the penalty spot. Both sides will be content with coming away from this game with a point, however each team will be looking to improve on this performance in the next series of fixtures.
On the betting front. Well, not great really. From all the tips I gave you on Thursday, sadly none of them won, however I did correctly predict three out of five results. Til next week!