Captain Mountney the stoppage-time hero as Dundalk stun Shamrock Rovers for crucial win

captain mountney the stoppage-time hero as dundalk stun shamrock rovers for crucial win

John Mountney celebrates his stoppage-time winner.

Shamrock Rovers 0

Niall Newberry reports from Oriel Park

DUNDALK TONIGHT CLAIMED a massive win in the SSE Airtricity League Premier Division as they dramatically defeated defending champions Shamrock Rovers 1-0 at Oriel Park.

It was captain John Mountney’s 91st-minute winner which moved Dundalk to within three points of second-from-bottom Drogheda United, who were defeated 3-2 by Galway United, while Rovers fell further behind Shelbourne and Derry City at the right end of the table.

Kick-off at Oriel was delayed by half an hour due to the Rovers players arriving at the ground without their kit – a disruption which was caused by an accident on the M50.

Taking charge of Dundalk was Liam Burns, who was acting as temporary replacement for Noel King following his departure from the club after just four matches in the dugout.

Burns would have been happy with how The Lilywhites started, with Archie Davies skinning Trevor Clarke on eight minutes before playing it back to Zak Bradshaw on the edge of the area, but his shot was blocked out by former Dundalk player Daniel Cleary.

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Rovers lacked any real creativity throughout the opening period but did create a decent opening on 17 minutes when Conan Noonan slipped Johnny Kenny through on the left, but the forward’s angled effort was easily gathered by Dundalk goalkeeper Ross Munro.

Jack Byrne’s free-kick, which sailed over, was The Hoops’ only other attempt – not counting the same player’s toe-poked pass right into the arms of Munro on the stroke of half-time.

Instead, it was Dundalk who finished the half the stronger, as Paul Doyle unleashed a speculative drive from distance which flew just marginally wide of the intended target.

Five minutes before the break, the marauding Zak Johnson released Horgan on the right, and his cut-back was almost turned into his own goal by Rovers skipper Roberto Lopes.

Dundalk continued their push for what would have been a deserved goal in the second half with Horgan, following some good link-up with Gullan, firing over from outside the box, not long before the same player saw another attempt trickle wide of the mark.

Doyle found himself in acres of space outside the danger area before curling a shot inches wide – cue a rapturous roar from the Oriel crowd who were starting to anticipate an unlikely win.

At the opposite end, Noonan and substitute Graham Burke had shots go miles off target.

From a long Bradshaw throw-in, Mayowa Animasahun headed into the arms of Rovers keeper Leon Pohls three minutes from time as Dundalk continued their search for a crucial three points.

Their winner came a minute into stoppage-time when Hayden Muller’s cross from the right eventually found its way to the far post to Mountney, whose volley flew into the bottom corner to send the home crowd into sheer pandemonium.

Dundalk: Ross Munro; Zak Johnson, Andy Boyle, Mayowa Animasahun; Archie Davies, Zak Bradshaw, Paul Doyle (Hayden Muller 75), John Mountney; Daryl Horgan; Jamie Gullan, Cameron Elliott (Sam Durrant 67).

Shamrock Rovers: Leon Pohls; Daniel Cleary, Roberto Lopes, Josh Honohan; Darragh Nugent, Conan Noonan (Neil Farrugia 66), Sean Kavanagh (Aaron McEneff 74), Trevor Clarke; Jack Byrne; Johnny Kenny (Graham Burke 66), Aaron Greene.

Referee: Alan Patchell

Attendance: 2,530

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