Sean Hoare, Patrick Hoban and Stephen O’Donnell celebrate their side's goal. Ciaran Culligan/INPHO

Late own goal breaks Waterford hearts as Dundalk move within a point of top spot

Stephen Kenny’s side earned a dramatic late win at Oriel Park to move within one point of first place.

Dundalk 1

Waterford United 0

Caoimhín Reilly reports from Oriel Park

WATERFORD UNITED WERE seconds away from securing a deserved share of the spoils at Oriel Park on Friday night, before a dramatic own goal from Gary Comerford earned Stephen Kenny’s side all three points.

In the third minute of stoppage time, as the Lilywhites hurled an effort into the penalty area for the umpteenth time, they got a break.

The ball evaded everyone but the unfortunate Garry Comerford who could only watch as he helplessly directed past his own ‘keeper, Lawrence Vigouroux following a strike from PatrickHoban.

Waterford would have been well worthy of a point after weathering Dundalk’s strong start to the second half.

Indeed, Alan Reynolds’ side may have taken all the three points on a different night, but have now suffered their second defeat of the campaign since securing promotion last season.

Stephen Kenny celebrates at full time Dundalk boss Stephen Kenny. Ciaran Culligan / INPHO Ciaran Culligan / INPHO / INPHO

Substitute John Martin had their best opportunity having got into the clear.

But Gary Rogers — on his 500th League of Ireland appearance — rushed out to save his effort with the use of his right shoulder, with the miss proving costly for the visitors.

Frustration built as Dundalk pressed forward in the closing moments, their every effort being repelled by central defender Kenny Browne and his defence at the back.

However, at the last, they were finally breached. Dundalk players ran away in hysteria to celebrate as Oriel Park erupted, while the visitors fell to their knees in despair.

It was an ending unbefitting of the game itself in so many ways as Dundalk breathed an almighty sigh of relief.

DUNDALK: Gary Rogers; Seán Gannon, Daniel Cleary, Seán Hoare, Dane Massey; Chris Shields (Stephen O’Donnell 84), Karolis Chvedukas (Ronan Murray 71); Jamie McGrath, Robbie Benson, Michael Duffy; Patrick Hoban (Marco Tagbajumi 79)

WATERFORD UNITED: Lawrence Vigouroux; John Kavanagh, Kenny Browne, Dave Webster, Dylan Barnett; Stanley Aborah (Paul Keegan 76), Garry Comerford; Derek Daly (John Martin 66), Gavin Holohan, Sander Puri; Dean O’Halloran

Referee: Robert Harvey (Dublin)

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