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Dublin: 20 °C Tuesday 2 June, 2020

Aaron Greene produces a super finish but Pat's suffer defeat in Europe

The Saints must overturn a 2-1 loss when they meet Skonto Riga at Richmond Park next week.

Aaron Green was the Saints' goalscorer tonight (file pic).
Aaron Green was the Saints' goalscorer tonight (file pic).
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Skonto Riga 2-1 St Patrick’s Athletic

ST PATRICK’S ATHLETIC were narrowly beaten by Skonto Riga in the first leg of their Europa League first qualifying round tie in Latvia this evening.

The FAI Cup winners drew first blood through Aaron Greene’s terrific strike but conceded twice either side of half-time, with Artūrs Karašausks and Vladislavs Gutkovskis on the scoresheet.

Christy Fagan, Killian Brennan, Sean Hoare and Kenny Browne returned to the starting line-up as Liam Buckley made four changes to the team that overcame Longford Town 3-0 last Friday.

The visitors began strongly with Chris Forrester getting plenty of joy in the early stages. and it was his vision which led to Pat’s taking the lead on 21 minutes. The winger picked out Greene with a pin-point pass and the former Sligo Rovers man controlled with his first touch before rifling past Andrejs Pavlovs.

Aaron Greene Skonto

Skonto responded seven minutes before half-time as Artūrs Karašausks was allowed space and time on the edge of the box to smash the ball home.

Skonto goal

Forrester had a great chance to to add a second for the Saints on the hour mark but his effort too easy for the opposing goalkeeper to collect after an excellent passage of play.

Skonto went in front for the first time on 65 minutes, with Gutkovskis finding the back of the net after Pat’s had been caught out by a counter-attack.

Pat’s lost captain Ger O’Brien and Sean Hoare to injury in the second half and will be hoping both can make swift recoveries ahead of the second leg in Dublin in a week’s time.

SKONTO: Pavlovs (c), Timofejevs, Rode, Smirnovs, Murillo, Visnakovs (Isajevs 72′), Kozlovs, Jermolajevs, Kovalovs, Gutkorvskis (Lukanyuk 83′), Karasausks.

ST PATRICK’S ATHLETIC: Clarke, O’Brien (c) (Lee Desmond 46′), Bermingham, Hoare (McGuinness 67′), Browne, Bolger, Brennan, Chambers, Forrester, Fagan (McGrath 73′), Greene.

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Ben Blake

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