RESILIENT Limerick FC claimed their first win in seven SSE Airtricity Premier Division games when securing a precious 2-0 win over champions St Patrick’s Athletic before an attendance of 793 at Thomond Park this Friday night.
Two second half goals from Danny Galbraith, his first ever for the club, and Jason Hughes helped the Blues record their first win in the top flight since mid-April.
Clinical Limerick, who had taken just two points from a possible 18 before kick-off, deserved their third success of the campaign. While St Pat’s enjoyed plenty of possession, Limerick held firm of the back, eradicating the errors which had dogged their play in recent outings.
After an even opening quarter, Limerick could well have taken the lead on 32 minutes when, from Shaun Kelly’s high cross from wide on the right, St Pat’s ‘keeper Brendan Clarke mis-judged the flight of the ball completely. However, unmarked Limerick FC captain Shane Duggan headed the ball wide from six yards out.
St Pat’s looked lively on the break and their Limerick-born midfielder Lee-J Lynch crossed superbly for Kenny Browne, but his header was easily saved by Barry Ryan.
After a scoreless first half, Limerick FC took the lead on 62 minutes with a terrific individual goal from winger Danny Galbraith. The former Manchester United youngster flicked the ball over a defender, before winning the race to possession and slotting superbly past St Pat’s ‘keeper Clarke.
The home side’s lead might only have lasted a couple of minutes, but Christy Fagan failed to convert a good chance from Forrester’s flick when unmarked at the back post.
Pat’s also create another decent opening on 73 minutes, but Sean Hoare’s effort was deflected out for a corner. The visitors pressed hard for an equaliser, but Lims created the best chance of that period when substitute James McGrath caught the Dubliners on the break, centred for Duggan, but his well struck effort was saved by Pat’s keeper Clarke.
The Blues did wrap the points with six minutes remaining when Galbraith this time turned provider as he centred for Jason Hughes who showed terrific composure to take a deft touch inside the box before producing a smashing finish past Clarke.
Limerick FC will face Douglas Hall in the Munster Senior Cup final this Monday evening at Turners Cross at 7.30pm.
Limerick have also confirmed that their FAI Ford Cup second round tie with Bohemians will take place at Thomond Park on Saturday, June 7 at 5.30pm.
LIMERICK FC - Barry Ryan, Shaun Kelly (Tony Whitehead 81), Stephen Folan, Danny Galbraith (Tam McManus 89), Shane Duggan (Capt), Rory Gaffney, Shane Tracy, Patrick Nzuzi, Prine Agyemang (James McGrath 47), Samuel Oji, Jason Hughes.
ST PATRICK’S ATHLETIC - Brendan Clarke, Ger O’Brien (Capt), Ian Bermingham, Sean Hoare, Kenny Browne, James Chambers, Chris Forrester, Christy Fagan, Keith Fahey, Lee-J Lynch (Killian Brennan 66), Conan Byrne.
REFEREE - Paul Tuite (Dublin)