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Campion and Leahy on the mark as Saints run riot against Waterford in Inchicore

Liam Buckley’s side dominated proceedings against European hopefuls Waterford.

Mick Leahy scored a brace for St Pat's on Friday night.
Mick Leahy scored a brace for St Pat's on Friday night.
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

St Patrick’s Athletic 3

Waterford FC 0

Dave Donnelly reports from Richmond Park

ACHILLE CAMPION SCORED his first goal in red and white as St Patrick’s Athletic stunned Waterford 3-0 at Richmond Park on Friday night.

Mick Leahy scored twice with his head as the new-look Saints turned on the style in the second-half to take all three points and push the Blues out of the third European spot in the process.

Manager Liam Buckley took a calculated risk in his team selection, venturing from his preferred 4-2-3-1 formation to go with three at the back.

Presumably done with countering the aerial threat of Blues’ strikers Ismahil Akinade and Courtney Duffus, the Saints played with little of their customary width in the first half.

Neither side played with much fluency in the first half but the home side in particular seemed to struggle in both attack and defence.

They did create the first half’s only clear-cut chance, however, as Campion did superbly well to wriggle out of the corner and tee up Jake Keegan, but the America was off-balance as he shot.

Liam Buckley St Patrick's Athletic manager Liam Buckley. Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

The second half saw a fired-up Athletic side take the game to their opponents, Ian Bermingham drilling a daisy-cutter centimetres wide before Matthew Connor saved well from Keegan.

They deservedly took the lead nine minutes into the half as Darragh Markey showed more hunger than Dessie Hutchinson to win the ball back on the edge of his box and charge forward.

Markey kept running as Ryan Brennan picked out Jake Keegan, who cut back before sliding in Markey. His shot was saved by Connor, but Campion was on hand to turn home the rebound.

Blues boss Alan Reynolds brought on Paul Keegan in an effort to change things but his side fell further behind when Leahy beat Akinade to nod home Markey’s corner.

And the defender – whose only previous goals for the Athletic came as a League Cup double against Dundalk in April – had a free header to nab his second and the Saints’ third.

ST PATRICK’S ATHLETIC: B Clarke; Desmond, Leahy, Toner; Madden, Clifford (R Brennan 25), Lennon, Markey, Bermingham; J Keegan (Doona 85), Campion (Turner 90).

WATERFORD FC: Connor; Feely (P Keegan 67), Browne, Webster, Barnett (Baba 89); Hutchinson, Héry, Holohan, Puri (Wilson 71); Duffus, Akinade.

Referee: Ben Connolly.

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