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Late drama in Dublin derby as Leahy snatches 99th-minute winner for Bohemians

Dan Byrne and Dan Carr were also on the scoresheet in a 2-1 win for the Keith Long’s side.

The Bohs players celebrate scoring.
The Bohs players celebrate scoring.

Shamrock Rovers 1
Bohemians 2

Ben Blake reports from Tallaght Stadium

BOHEMIANS HAVE DONE a home-and-away double over Dublin rivals Shamrock Rovers thanks to Darragh Leahy’s dramatic winner deep in injury-time.

Dan Carr’s third league goal in as many matches put Stephen Bradley’s side ahead in the first half, before Dan Byrne drew the visitors level midway through the second period.

And, with the clock showing 99 minutes, the 19-year-old full-back made it 2-1 to send the travelling supporters into a frenzy.

Bohs had earned bragging rights at a sold-out Dalymount Park on the opening night of the season, but that was one of only two league victories this season and they trailed their Dublin rivals by seven points heading into the latest showdown.

Rovers, who suffered a 2-1 loss to Dundalk last Friday, were without the services of Trevor Clarke — who underwent ACL surgery this week — and Sean Boyd, while manager Stephen Bradley kept faith with goalkeeper Kevin Horgan despite a costly mistake at Oriel Park.

Gypsies boss Keith Long was missing skipper Derek Pender (calf), Dan Casey (concussion), Oscar Brennan (ankle) and long-term absentees Cristian Magerusan (metatarsal) and Ryan Swan (cruciate).

Lee Grace and Eoghan Stokes Bohs striker Eoghan Stokes is watched by Rovers defender Lee Grace and (left) Keith Ward. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Bohs started with former Leeds United striker Eoghan Stokes started up front on his own for the visitors, but it was young winger Danny Grant who produced the first real chance of the night.

Racing onto a flick, Grant got in behind Ally Gilchrist with his pace, but could only drag his effort across goal when he should really have tested Kevin Horgan.

Rovers full-back Ethan Boyle put Carr in down the right, and the English striker’s cut-back very nearly reached Brandon Miele. It was cleared and came out to Sean Kavanagh, who struck straight into the arms of Shane Supple.

Horgan then had to tip over a dipping strike from Keith Ward.

On 27 minutes, Bohs came close as Dan Byrne’s diagonal ball found Stokes. He laid off to JJ Lunney, who flicked it inside for himself and fired at the Hoops keeper. Ward followed up and blasted wide, and although it didn’t appear to come off a Rovers player on the way out, a corner was awarded.

That decision mattered little as the Hoops opened up a one-goal advantage a minute later. Graham Burke, named SSE Airtricity League/SWAI Player of the Month for March this week, sent an inviting cross to the back post.

Carr still had a lot to do, but the former Huddersfield Town man showed his agility to brilliantly flick the ball first-time beyond Bohemians keeper Shane Supple.

The Bohs players were up in arms minutes into the second half as Luke Byrne brought down Grant inside the box, but referee Robert Harvey didn’t feel the challenge warranted a penalty.

Long brought on Dinny Corcoran on the hour-mark, but it was a Rovers substitute, Joel Coustrain, who created the next opening. After a smart turn, the Limerick native shot straight at Supple.

The away side did restore parity on 69 minutes, however. Dan Byrne ghosted into the box unmarked to side-foot a volley home from cross. That equaliser sparked some crowd trouble in the away end and it was a number of minutes before play restarted.

Bohemians had their tails up now and both Stokes and Corcoran going close, with Horgan saving from both. Down the other end, Gary Shaw, on in place of the injured Carr, couldn’t connect with a cut-back.

Supple then had to be at his very best to push Shaw’s goalbound header out after a Kavanagh free-kick had pinballed off a few heads in the box.

Nine minutes of injury-time were played due to the lengthy stoppage, and Coustrain was inches away from finding the top corner.

Step forward Leahy, who latched onto the end of Grant’s cross to beat Horgan.

SHAMROCK ROVERS: Kevin Horgan; Ethan Boyle, Ally Gilchrist, Lee Grace, Luke Byrne; Greg Bolger, Ronan Finn (c); Brandon Miele (Joel Coustrain 53), Graham Burke, Sean Kavanagh; Dan Carr (Gary Shaw 66).

BOHEMIANS: Shane Supple (c); Keith Buckley, Rob Cornwall,  Ian Morris, Darragh Leahy; Danny Grant, Dan Byrne (Philly Gannon), Dylan Watts, JJ Lunney (Dinny Corcoran 61), Keith Ward; Eoghan Stokes (Karl Moore 89).

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Ben Blake

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