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Premier Division

  • 19 April 2013
  • • 19:05
  • • Richmond Park, Dublin
  • Referee: N. Doyle
  • • Attendance: 1656

St Patrick's Athletic 2-0 Sligo Rovers - Saints hand Sligo first league defeat of the season

St Patrick's Athletic 2-0 Sligo Rovers - Saints hand Sligo first league defeat of the season

David Maher

An impressive Killian Brennan performance helped St Pat's defeat Sligo at Richmond Park, handing the Bit o' Red their first defeat of the season

Sligo Rovers were finally defeated in the Airtricity Premier Division, coming away from Richmond Park with a 2-0 defeat thanks to goals from Conan Byrne and Killian Brennan.

St Pat's dominated early proceedings and were full of confidence following their 4-0 over Shelbourne on Monday with Sligo being put under severe pressure on the ball. Defenders Jeff Henderson and Evan McMillan were throwing their bodies in front of every doing everything they could to prevent Pat's from taking the lead.

Pat's dominance paid off in the 21st minute when a corner whipped in by Killian Brennan found the head of Kenny Browne who headed onto the inside of the post and seemed destined for the net only for Gary Rogers  to palm it away. However, the ball fell into the path of Conan Byrne, who tapped home from two yards out.

Sligo found it very hard to make any clear cut chances with the league’s top scorer Anthony Elding starved of possession with Pat's centre back Kenny Browne winning the aerial battles and going toe to toe with him. An injury to Raffael Cretaro before the game didn’t help as Sligo were missing his energy and pace as Pat's defended Sligo's attacks with ease.

The in-form Chris Forrester nearly doubled the lead in the 30th minute when he hit a snapshot which Rogers saved well.

The second half began with both sides picking up yellows and Pat's continued to dominate the midfield with Greg Bolger, John Russell and Brennan closing down the Sligo midfield giving them little opportunity to create any chances to force an equaliser. The first real chance of the second half came when Killian Brennan chested the ball down and volleyed from 30 yards out but Rogers saved well and held onto the ball with Anto Flood ready to pounce.

With 20 minutes left Pat's were unlucky not to double their lead when Greg Bolger controlled the ball in the Sligo box and hit a powerful low shot past Gary Rogers, but Jeff Henderson cleared the ball off the line to keep Sligo in the game.

Pat's should of finished Sligo off with ten minutes left when good play from Forrester set up subtitute Christy Fagan, but he blazed his shot over the bar with the goal gaping.

With Sligo pushing for an equaliser substitute Iarlaith Davoren was sent off for a tackle that was a bit harsh on Killian Brennan. Finally in the 89th minute Pat's finished off Sligo when Evan McMillan fouled Conan Byrne in the box and Killian Brennan stepped up and chipped the ball down the middle to give Pats all three points.

A big win for Pat's puts them back in the mix for the title as Sligo suffered their second defeat in a row, following their midweek Setanta Cup loss.