Second-half goals from Chris Forrester and Daryl Kavanagh saw St Pat's take three points against title rivals Dundalk to move them clear at the top of the tableSt Patrick's Athletic defeated Dundalk to move three points clear at the top of the Airtricity Premier Division table. Chris Forrester and Daryl Kavanagh scored goals in a seven minute period in the second-half to see the Inchicore side take all three points.
There was a high tempo opening to the top of the table clash and in the opening 10 minutes Dundalk were applying more pressure and attacking the home side’s goal. Conan Byrne had a chance to run through on the visitor’s goal but Brian Gartland did well to get the ball away. Both defences were coming out on top, nearing the end of the half St Pat's were having the better of it and Daryl Kavanagh was dragged down by John Dillon but the resulting free-kick came to nothing. The half ended with Richie Towell having a great chance from a pass from Pat Hoban, who was having a quiet enough half but the midfielder kicked the ball straight at Brendan Clarke.
The second half opened with a Pat Hoban chance forcing Andrew Boyle to make a great clearance for the Saints. Towell then did well to go past two Pat’s players before hitting a curling shot just pat the post.
The breakthrough came in the 51st minute from Killian Brennan's free-kick, which led to a great cross from Conan Byrne for Chris Forrester to net. Dundalk now found themselves chasing the game and things got worse for the Lilywhites when the Saints doubled their lead shortly afterwards with great control and an equally good strike by Kavanagh.
Dundalk did have a chance to get one back when Dillon put a ball through to Hoban, but Clarke did well to save. Towell put another accurate ball through and after Clarke came for and missed it, neither Hoban nor O’Donnell could get an effort away.
Pat's were really piling the pressure on and Peter Cherrie had to make two saves in a row from Kavanagh, and with the resulting corner about to be taken O’Donnell was given a red card, leaving Dundalk with 10 men for the last few minutes.
St Pat’s extend their lead to three points and their title challenge is still on course while Dundalk will need to regroup from this defeat for their outing next week against Limerick.