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Kelly's hat-trick sees holders Dundalk stroll through to FAI Cup semi-finals

The Lilywhites are in the last four after a 3-1 win at Waterford.

Kelly's first-half treble sent Dundalk on their way.
Kelly's first-half treble sent Dundalk on their way.
Image: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

Waterford 1

Dundalk 3 

DUNDALK ADVANCED THROUGH to the FAI Cup semi-finals after a 3-1 win over Waterford FC at the RSC on Monday night.

A first-half Daniel Kelly hat-trick had Dundalk in control and despite Maxi Kouogun headed goal and a better second-half from the home side, the holders comfortably prevailed.

Pat Hoban had the first chance of the game on six minutes but Waterford ‘keeper Matthew Connor made the save. 

Dundalk’s early pressure paid dividends when they took the lead after nine minutes.

Kenny Browne couldn’t head clear and Pat Hoban picked up possession down the right. He fired the ball across goal for Kelly to make it 1-0.

The lead was doubled on 23 minutes. Kelly broke the offside trap from Hoban’s ball and he fired into the back of the net past Connor.

Rory Feely almost got Waterford back into the game on the half hour. The Blues captain got on the end of Kevin Lynch’s cross but his header was narrowly wide of the far post.

And Dundalk made it 3-0 after 33 minutes. Patrick McEleney crossed for Kelly and he headed the ball into the far corner beyond Connor. 

Waterford had a great chance to get back into the game from the penalty spot. Michael O’Connor was fouled by Brian Gartland but Shane Duggan’s penalty kick was saved by Aaron McCarey.

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vinny-perth-celebrates-after-the-game Vinny Perth celebrates after the game. Source: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

Alan Reynolds’ side had a great chance just three minutes into the second half. Poynton’s free-kick found the head of Browne but McCarey again saved well.

But Waterford did find a way back into the game on 56 minutes. Poynton’s free-kick wasn’t cleared fully and Kouogun headed into the top corner.

The hosts very nearly pulled another back just short of the hour mark when Poynton’s long ball set O’Connor away, but he fired narrowly wide and the chance was gone.

Waterford pushed further as McCarey saved from Poynton and JJ Lunney late in the game but it was Dundalk who progressed to the last four.

WATERFORD FC: Matthew Connor, Rory Feely, Kenny Browne, Maxi Kouogun, Kevin Lynch, Sam Bone (Dean O’Halloran 78), Shane Duggan (JJ Lunney 69), Georgie Poynton, Will Fitzgerald (Cory Galvin 62), Michael O’Connor, Walter Figueira.

DUNDALK: Aaron McCarey, Sean Hoare, Brian Gartland, Chris Shields, Dane Massey, Daniel Kelly (Robbie Benson 69), Jamie McGrath, Patrick McEleney, Cameron Dummigan (Sean Gannon 74), Michael Duffy, Pat Hoban (Georgie Kelly 81).

Referee: Paul Tuite (Dublin). 

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