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Dublin: 3°C Sunday 28 February 2021

Waterford take the points as Dundalk turn their focus towards Arsenal clash

John Martin’s second-half header saw Waterford move up into fourth place.

Winner: Martin headed the game's only goal.
Winner: Martin headed the game's only goal.
Image: Ken Sutton/INPHO

Waterford FC 1-0 Dundalk

A SECOND-HALF John Martin goal secured three points for Waterford FC as they saw off Dundalk 1-0 at the RSC on Sunday afternoon.

In a game that took time to really get going, Martin’s header 12 minutes into the second period proved the difference as Dundalk must now once again turn their attention to European competition.

After a slow start, Dundalk had the first chance as Michael Duffy found Jordan Flores who laid the return into his path, but Brian Murphy made an excellent save to deny Duffy.

Ali Coote’s corner found Matthew Smith at the back post but Aaron McCarey collected his dangerous looping cross at the second attempt, as Waterford got going.

The home side should have taken the lead five minutes before half time when John Martin’s pressure forced Chris Shields into a mistake and he found Daryl Murphy. The striker went around Brian Gartland but his effort was narrowly wide of McCarey’s post.

Murphy went close again minutes later, once again from a Martin pass, but McCarey made a another smart save from the powerful drive, while at the other end Jordan Flores fired over Murphy’s crossbar at the sides went in scoreless at the break.

Dundalk started strongest but David McMillan’s header from Mountney’s cross was saved by Brian Murphy.

Twelve minutes into the second half, Waterford FC took the lead. Ali Coote’s free kick from the right was cleared only as far as Will Fitzgerald on the left. He sent the cross in and John Martin’s pinpoint header found the bottom corner past McCarey.

Daryl Murphy then missed a big chance to double the lead; he latched onto his namesake Brian’s kick out but McCarey was out quick to make a good save.

Patrick McEleney’s free kick caused danger in the Waterford penalty area but Brian Gartland’s header didn’t trouble Murphy’s goal as the visitors pressed for a leveller.

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Five minutes from time, Dundalk almost did grab that equaliser. Waterford’s Jake Davidson didn’t clear the danger and Pat Hoban picked up the loose ball but his low strike went inches wide of the far post.

Hoban went close again two minutes later but he headed wide from Duffy’s corner as Waterford FC saw out stoppage time to pick up the three points and close the gap to Dundalk in third place.

Waterford FC: Brian Murphy, Darragh Power, Robbie Weir, Jake Davidson, Tyreke Wilson; Will Fitzgerald (Will Longbottom 65), Niall O’Keeffe, Ali Coote, Matthew Smith; John Martin Tunmise Sobowale 74); Daryl Murphy (Dean Walsh 90)

Dundalk: Aaron McCarey, John Mountney, Brian Gartland, Andy Boyle, Cameron Dummigan (Darragh Leahy 65); Stefan Colovic (Sean Gannon 65), Chris Shields (Greg Sloggett 74), Jordan Flores (Patrick Hoban 61), Sean Murray (Patrick McEleney 61), Michael Duffy; David McMillan.

Referee: Sean Grant

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