McManus strikes as Limerick hand Athlone their eighth straight defeat

Athlone keeper Craig Skinner sees red as Mick Cooke’s side remain pointless.

File photo.
File photo.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

Limerick 2-1 Athlone Town

LIMERICK SECURED THEIR second win in a row thanks to a deserved 2-1 win at Thomond Park over Athlone Town.

Sean Byrne had the first effort of the game – stinging the palms of Barry Ryan from twenty-plus yards. The veteran stopper pushed the powerful drive wide after Byrne skipped past two challenges.

Limerick responded just a minute later with their own effort through Jason Hughes. After a quick break, the ball fell kindly for the Limerick native, but his effort was easy for Skinner.

The Shannonsiders did eventually hit the front on twenty minutes. Shane Tracy struck his free kick from the right to perfection and Robbie Williams rose highest to flick his header past Skinner.

The orthodox full back almost doubled his tally on the half hour mark when he lined up one up from thirty yards. The strike had Skinner scampering, but ultimately flashed inches past the post.

Athlone punished Limerick for their lack of killer instinct just five minutes before the break – Kealan Dillion cut in from the right hand side to level matters after some slack defending from the Blues.

The home side hit the front on 53 minutes with a stunning effort from Tam McManus.

The Scotsman smashed his effort home from the edge of the box much to the delight of the home support.

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Athlone were reduced to ten when keeper Skinner saw red for taking down Ross Mann 15 minutes from time. Shane Tracy saw his penalty saved by Sean Brennan who took up goalkeeping duties for the remainder.

The Blues saw out the rest of the game with relative ease – leaving Athlone pointless in their first eight games.

Limerick: Ryan; Kelly, Oji, Folan, Williams; Tracy; Hughes, Agyemang (Mann 66), Duggan; Gaffney, Curran (McManus 39).

Subs not used: Cusack, Nzuzi, Murphy, Whitehead, Rainsford.

Athlone Town: Skinner (S Brennan, 77); McMahon, A Byrne, Prendergast, Clancy; Dillon (Marks 87), S Byrne, Hughes, O’Brien, Rusk (Sweeney 91); Gorman.

Subs not used: Sexton, D Brennan, Harney, Scullion.

Referee: Anthony Buttimer (Cork)

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Andrew Cunneen

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