©INPHO/Donall Farmer Stephen McPhail is congratulated by Eamon Zayed.
# Round-Up
Debut goal for McPhail as Hoops put five past Glentoran
There were also wins for St Patrick’s Athletic, Sligo Rovers and Coleraine in the Setanta Sports Cup tonight.

Shamrock Rovers 5-1 Glentoran

IT WAS A miserable night in Tallaght Stadium but the Shamrock Rovers fans who ventured out into the wind and rain won’t regret it.

Stephen McPhail got his Hoops career off to a glorious start as the champions took a sizeable step towards the Setanta Sports Cup semi-finals.

The former Ireland international was only on the pitch for eight minutes before he clipped a beautiful free past Elliott Morris, bringing the Tallaght crowd to their feet.

Robert Bayly and Kieran Marty Waters had already given Rovers the advantage before McPhail’s magic touch and late goals from Gary McCabe and Simon Madden settled matters.

For Glentoran John McGuigan’s deflected effort, which left the sides level at the break, is all they have to show ahead of the second leg on 17 March.

While McPhail watched on from the bench it was Waters — recruited from Bray in the off-season — who had the biggest impact in desperate conditions.

Rovers keeper Barry Murphy had to deal with a strong wind driving the rain into his face but it was at the other end that the elements made their biggest impact. Madden’s cross hung up over the Glens area on eight minutes and with the defence wrongfooted, Waters drifted in off his left wing to head back across goal for Bayly to finish on the volley.

But despite Rovers’ early dominance, the visitors levelled on 23 minutes. McGuigan turned in the box and as Luke Byrne and David O’Connor slid in to stop him, the shot was deflected past Murphy.

The rain eased off after the break and Waters was rewarded for his determined work. He muscled his way onto the ball and his shot, which came off Stephen McAlorum, looped over the helpless Morris.

Waters then won the free which McPhail judged beautifully for his debut goal on 73 minutes, clipping it off the underside of the crossbar from 20 yards.

Gary McCabe stole in at the back post for Rovers’ fourth with 10 minutes to play and Madden ensured even more of a cushion when he fired home deep into stoppage time.

SHAMROCK ROVERS: Murphy, Madden, O’Connor, Kenna (c), Byrne, Waters (O’Connor, 82), Brennan (McPhail, 65), Bayly, McCabe, Kilduff, Zayed (Kelly, 74). Substitutes: Hyland, Cornwall, McPhail, Finn, Robinson, Kelly, O’Connor.
GLENTORAN: Morris, Gordon, Hill (Kerr, 75), Bradley, Addis, McAlorum, Clarke, Miskimmin (McKee, 65), Scullion, McGuigan, McCaffrey (Hughes, 45). Substitutes: Hughes, O’Hanlon, Henderson, Kerr, Hughes, Hogg, Boyd, McKee.

Eric Odhiambo celebates scoring 24/2/2014 ©INPHO / Presseye/Stephen Hamilton Sligo's Eric Odhiambo celebates scoring. ©INPHO / Presseye/Stephen Hamilton / Presseye/Stephen Hamilton

Elsewhere, Sligo Rovers recorded a 4-1 win away to Crusaders with new signing Eric Odhiambo bagging himself a hat-trick.

The 24-year-old striker opened the scoring on 17 minutes before adding two more in between Aaron Greene 39th-minute goal. Declan Caddell grabbed a consolation for the home side midway through the second half.

Chris Forrester’s first half goal was enough for St Patrick’s Athletic to take a 1-0 win over Ballinamallard United away from Ferney Park while Dundalk lost out to Coleraine 3-2 — with former Derry City forward David McDaid scoring twice for the Bannsiders.

Tonight’s results:

  • Shamrock Rovers 5-1 Glentoran
  • Crusaders 1-4 Sligo Rovers
  • Dundalk 2-3 Coleraine
  • Ballinamallard United 0-1 St Patrick’s Athletic

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