Although the score line may give the impression of a somewhat one-sided affair, Fingal dominated in the early stages of the match.
Glen Crowe had a half-chance after just two minutes following a Lorcan Fitzgerald cross, while Conan Byrne almost saw his cross diverted into the roof of the Bohemians net by Ken Oman on 14 minutes.
Bohemians also had their chances early on in the game. On five minutes Mark Quigley whistled a long-range effort past the post of Fingal ‘keeper Darren Quigley while Jason Byrne went close with a glancing header on 20 minutes.
Glen Crowe, making his first start against Bohemians since his move to Sporting Fingal, spurned two golden chances in the 22nd and 24th minute.
Crowe was clear at the back post for the first effort but failed to finish the move. The Fingal no.10 then somehow headed the ball away from goal when it seemed easier to score.
? The introduction of Anto Murphy on 31 minutes to replace the injured Raffaele Cretaro proved to be an inspired change as Murphy set up the first goal and worked tirelessly all night.
??On 37 minutes, Murphy crossed well for Paul Keegan in the Fingal penalty area. Keegan was lucky to get a touch on the ball to guide it past Darren Quigley and make it 1-0.
The first goal may have had an element of luck to it, but the second goal was a product of sheer skill on the part of Gareth McGlynn. McGlynn dribbled past Lorcan Fitzgerald and to the edge of the Fingal box, where he shifted the ball to his right foot and banged it low past the helpless Quigley.
Sporting tried hard to come out from half time and find a way back into the match, but a hugely efficient defensive display saw Bohemians deny Fingal in all areas. Oman and McGuiness did superbly to cut out successive attacks from the Ravens, while Glenn Cronin tracked back well to fill the area in front of the Bohs defense.
Bohemians introduced Paddy Madden for Jason Byrne on 51 minutes and nine minutes later the striker had a chance with a header that nearly looped into the Fingal net.
The remainder of the second half saw Bohs enjoy the best chances through two Anto Murphy shots on 70 and 72 minutes. The Gypsies never really gave up their stranglehold on the match.
Fingal’s best chance of the second half came after 80 minutes when Conan Byrne found Stephen Paisley free at the far post, but with the goal at his mercy Paisley fell over and wasted the opportunity.
On 83 minutes, Lorcan Fitzgerald was given a second yellow after a rash tackle on Anto Murphy.
A record attendance at the Morton Stadium for a Sporting Fingal match, witnessed what proved to be less than a classic, but Bohemians will be glad of the three points as they look to get their title challenge back on track.
Sporting Fingal: Darren Quigley, Ger O’Brien, Lorcan Fitzgerald, Shaun Williams (Colm James ’75), Stephen Paisley, Kenny Browne, Conan Byrne, Ronan Finn, Gary O’Neill, Glen Crowe (Eamon Zayed ’67), Shane McFaul (Alan Kirby ’75).
Subs Not Used: Brian Gannon, Brendan Clarke
Bohemians: Barry Murphy, Rossiter, Glenn Cronin, McGuiness, Ken Oman, Gareth McGlynn, Paul Keegan, Rafaele Cretaro (Anto Murphy ’31 – Ruadhri Higgins ‘90), Jason Byrne (Paddy Madden ’51), Mark Quigley, Brian Shelley.
Subs Not Used: Chris O’Connor, Conor Powell
Referee: A.Buttimer (Cork)
Extratime Man of the Match: Ken Oman