Date: 7:45 p.m. April 24, 2009
Venue: Dalymount Park
Att: 1,750 (est)
Bohemians extended their lead at the top of the League of Ireland Premier Division after a deserved victory over a poor Bray Wanderers at Dalymount Park tonight. Two goals just before the break, from Killian Brennan and Jason Byrne, were more then enough to dispatch of a Wanderers side who drop to second bottom following this result.
Bray started brightly, putting pressure on Bohs’ players all over the park and earning two early corners as a result of lively opening pace. However the visitor’s only effort of note was Dave Mulcahy’s eighth minute shot from the edge of the area which curled just wide. After ten minutes the Pat Fenlon’s began to control the game and had Wanderers camped largely in their own half for much of the opening forty five minutes.
In a half of few clear cut chances Bohs were completely dominant with Killian Brennan, Graham Carey and in particular Gary Deegan controlling the play. Carey created room for a twenty-five yard effort after twenty four minutes but it was comfortably saved. Two minutes later and Carey’s corner should have been turned in by the unmarked Ken Oman but he somehow glanced his side footed effort wide of the far post. Although Bohs were in complete control, the breakthrough was lacking with the halftime whistle approaching.
Killian Brennan finally opened the scoring with a classy free kick three minutes before the break. Having earned the free himself, when Dane Massey brought him down on the edge of the area, Brennan stepped up to curl a delightful effort into the top left hand corner of Chris O’Connor’s goal.
The lead was doubled within sixty seconds when Brennan and Joseph Ndo linked well in the middle of the park to release Brian Shelley down the right-wing. Shelley stood the ball up to the unmarked Jason Byrne - who found space largely due to a Bray defence that was pulled all over the place by the hosts movement – to head in from six yards. That was Byrne’s 145th goal in the League of Ireland, putting him in the top ten scorers of all time.
Bray’s Jake Kelly came on for John Flood at half time and created a few problems for the Bohs defence however, again, it was the home side who dominated. Just before the hour, Dane Massey found space for a twenty-five yard effort that didn’t trouble Brian Murphy too much but, beyond that one chance, Bray struggled.
In the sixty-second minute a wonderful move almost resulted in Byrne’s second goal. Murphy’s goal kick was flicked into Byrne’s path by Glen Crowe, who then released Carey down the right. Unfortunately for Byrne, however, Carey’s cross flew inches ahead of his diving foot.
Ten minutes later and again Byrne almost doubled his tally, capitalising on some woeful Bray defending. Brian Murphy’s goal kick travelled all the way through to the striker who out muscled Derek Foran to the ball, however he couldn’t get a shot away under pressure from Foran, Chris Deans and Chris O’Connor.
Six minutes from time and Neale Fenn should have added the third goal to make our pre-match prediction correct. Jason Byrne’s wonderful pass on the spin released Anto Murphy down the right. Murphy found Fenn free on the penalty spot however his header went wide.
The second half chances proved irrelevant however, as Bohemians ran out comfortable two nil winners in a completely convincing display.
extratime.ie Men of the Match: Jason Byrne/Killian Brennan
Bohemians: Murphy, Heary, Powell, Deegan (Keegan 58), Shelley, Oman, Carey (Murphy 68), Ndo, Crowe (Fenn 78), J. Byrne, Brennan Subs not used: Gregg, S. Byrne
Bray Wanderers: O’Connor, Webster, Massey, Foran, Deans, Brennan (Shields 36), Kavanagh, Mulcahy, Byrne (Mulroy 71), Flood (Kelly 45), McCabe Subs not used: Forsyth, Kane