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Dublin: 11 °C Tuesday 22 October, 2019

Dundalk hammer Limerick to reach fourth cup semi-final on the spin

The double is still well and truly on for Dundalk.

Image: Ciaran Culligan/INPHO

Limerick 0

Dundalk 4

Andrew Cunneen reports from Markets Field

DUNDALK ARE THROUGH to the last four of the FAI Cup for the fourth consecutive season after thrashing Limerick at the Markets Field.

Pat Hoban notched an early brace and the visitors never looked back – making it 3-0 before the break and picking their hosts apart when they advanced forward.

Patrick Hoban celebrates scoring their first goal Patrick Hoban celebrates scoring Dundalk's first goal Source: Ciaran Culligan/INPHO

Limerick have kept just a single clean sheet at home all season, but Tommy Barrett opted to name the same side that almost nicked a result against the league leaders just a week prior to this last-eight clash.

A back four comprised of midfielder Darren Murphy, the youthful centre-half pairing of Killian Brouder and Colman Kennedy, and the sparsely-used Shane Tracy might have raised some eyebrows last week, but on that occasion they held Dundalk for 80 minutes before Michael Duffy struck from 10 yards to put the Lilywhites six points clear.

Stephen Kenny watched his side struggle to break down a team who have kept just one home clean sheet all season and reacted as you would expect – with changes.

Dane Massey, John Mountney, Patrick McEleney and Ronan Murray came in for Dean Jarvis, Chris Shields, Jamie McGrath and Dylan Connolly.

John Mountney John Mountney Source: Ciaran Culligan/INPHO

While Dundalk seemed to feel the pressure of the title race last week following their slip-up against Shamrock Rovers, Duffy’s winner and Raffaele Cretaro’s strike in Turner’s Cross ensured they come to the Markets Field refreshed and ready to have a proper go at Limerick.

And they did just that.

Pat Hoban converted a drilled cross along the six-yard box after Murray took up a clever position on the left flank. His neat interplay with Robbie Benson in the lead-up was exactly what the Lilywhites were missing seven days previously.

As a tie, it all but ended fifteen minutes later as Hoban grabbed his second. This time, Limerick stopper Tommy Holland may have been guilty. Dane Massey floated a cross into the six-yard box and Hoban capitalised on the young goalkeeper’s hesitancy.

John Mountney celebrates scoring their third goal with Dane Massey John Mountney celebrates Dundalk's third Source: Ciaran Culligan/INPHO

John Mountney added a third before half-time, giving the locals very little reason to embrace the cold.

Those who did saw only a Georgie Kelly strike 20 minutes from time further extending a lead that was already a bridge too far for the youthful home side.

Dundalk now firmly have a league and cup double in their sights and are looking to reclaim both trophies from arch rivals Cork City in the process.

Stephen Kenny celebrates winning Source: Ciaran Culligan/INPHO

Limerick: Tommy Holland; Darren Murphy, Colman Kennedy, Killian Brouder, Shane Tracy; Shane Duggan, Cian Coleman; Karl O’Sullivan (Ger Barry, 86), Barry Maguire, Will Fitzgerald (Billy Dennehy, 74); Connor Ellis (Danny Morrissey, 74).

Dundalk: Gary Rogers; Sean Gannon, Dan Cleary (Stephen Folan, 67), Brian Gartland, Dane Massey; John Mountney, Patrick McEleney, Robbie Benson (Dean Jarvis, 77), Michael Duffy; Ronan Murray; Pat Hoban (Georgie Kelly, 55).

Referee: Derek Tomney (Dublin)

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About the author:

Andrew Cunneen

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