Limerick 37 1 – 3 Longford Town

Longford Town struck in either half to secure a win against an unlucky Super Blues who had plenty of chances to win this game at Jackman Park.

Jason Oladeli, Steven Brennan and Robert Douglas were all on target at the Lower Careys Road venue on a night when Lims midfielder Dave Ryan received a second half red card.

Limerick defender Paul Danaher came within inches of getting his head to a Brian Cleary corner after 15 minutes. But Longford went ahead with a goal right out of the top drawer mid way through the half, Rob Douglas splitting the Lims defence for Oladeli to race thought and slide the ball under keeper Dave Ryan.

The Blues responded via Gary Sheahan, who flashed a low shot cum cross across the six yard box. However, the visitors nearly doubled their advantage approaching the half hour mark, but Gary Murphy’s free kick from the left flew just wide of the near post with Ryan scrambling across his goal line.

Darren McKenna was then thwarted by a brilliant tackle by Danaher. Limerick swept up field from that intervention Paul Walsh and Peter White combining to feed Garry Sheahan who guided home at the near post.

Sheehan was dangerous and left the visiting defence for dead at the other end before watching his low centre hoofed clear of the danger zone. But Lims were very fortunate to keep their goal intact in the 53rd minute when Ryan saved with his feet from Darren McKenna and Danaher blocked down Oladelis effort from the rebound.

However, the relief was short lived as the visitors went in front from Murphy’s corner, Brennan being left unmarked to head home at the near post. Ryan was then sent off for a high tackle Stephen Gough as it all began to go wrong in a disastrous 60 second period for the Shannonsiders.

The hosts nearly restored parity in the 71st minute however, Gough clearing from inside the six yard box from Danaher. But Longford doubled their advantage moments later when Rob Douglas latched unto Neal Gallagher’s route one clearance to slot home from close range.

Limerick deserved to have at least reduced the deficit in the final minutes with Tommy Barrett, Paul Walsh and Gary Sheahan all being denied by Town keeper Gallagher and some last ditch defending.

Limerick 37: Ryan, White (Daly 65), Cleary, Danaher (Purcell 75), Barrett, Hughes, Goggin, Ryan, Walsh, Sheahan, Hayes (Tierney 52)

Longford Town: Gallagher, Gough, Garry, Brennan, Doyle, Rushe, Hardy, Murphy (Harte 85), Oladeli (Connolly 86), McKenna, Douglas (Lynch 73)

Ref: S Grant (Wexford)