Colmán Stanley reports from Richmond Park
It was a much more sombre affair at Richmond Park than on Friday night as St Patrick’s Athletic beat Wexford 3-0 to reach the quarter-finals of the Leinster Senior Cup.
It was more subdued on Monday night as captain David Webster and Chris Forrester were the only two players in the starting XI who started in the victory over Cork City.
Goals from Forrester, Jake Walker and Paul Cleary saw Harry Kenny’s side to a second victory in four days in front of the home fans.
The Saints and Wexford had met in the quarter final stage of last year’s competition, with the Saints running away with a 5-0 victory.
The first half was dominated by the home side and they nearly hit the front only for Joseph Walshe to save brilliantly as Brandon Miele’s shot from 20 yards was heading into the top corner.
The best chance of the half involved an even better save from Walshe when he denied Cian Coleman as the midfielder looked like he was going to score from the edge of the box.
The Saints started the second half strongly and Coleman nearly caught Walshe off his line as his audacious shot from 50 yards just cleared the crossbar.
Pats then got their breakthrough after some typical play from Forrester. The Saints’ star man picked the ball up just inside the Wexford half, playied a couple of one-twos and finished with pin-point accuracy from just outside the box.
They got their second immediately after when Walker headed home from a James Doona cross just before the hour.
The home side pressed and pressed for the remainder of the game, forcing the impressive Walshe into numerous saves.
They got their just rewards as Cleary tapped in from 5 yards as Walshe was unable to parry Miele’s shot to safety, seconds before the final whistle.
It was successful evening for the home side as they gave many fringe players a good run out, as well as players such as Walker and Kevin Kelly who come from the underage teams.
St Patrick’s Athletic: Barry Murphy; David Webster (Kevin Toner 75), Ciaran Kelly, Paul Cleary; Georgie Poynton, Chris Forrester (Kevin Kelly 67), Cian Coleman, Darragh Markey, James Doona; Brandon Miele, Gary Shaw (Jake Walker 4).
Subs not used: Brian Maher (gk), Ian Bermingham, Jamie Lennon, Keith Carter.
Wexford: Joe Walshe; Thomas Croke, Owen McCormack, Lee Costello, Torik Adegode; Danny Doyle, Paddy Cahill, Nika Arevadze (Ryan Nolan 84); Emmet Nugent, Sean Kelly (Sean Roche 67), Danny Furlong (Jack Doherty 70).
Subs not used: Corey Chambers (gk), Emmanuel Lawal, Andrew Farrell, Darragh O’Connor.
Booked: Lee Costello (64).