Christy Fagan 25' -
A Christy Fagan penalty gave Bohemians the win on a night in which they probably could have put a few more past their visitors. UCD had a solid first half and could have scored but fell away completely in the later stages of the match.
After just three minutes, Dean Marshall could have given the Students an early lead. Chris O'Connor rushed out of the Bohs goal to clear the ball from the path of Samir Belhout, but his clearance ended up at the feet of Dean Marshall about 40 yards from goal wide on the left. Faced with an open goal, Marshall shot pitifully, but soon atoned for this miss with some excellent play in midfield.
Marshall was key to all of UCD's good first half play. He was able to spray the ball from left to right, catching the Bohs midfield off guard at times. For all their easy-on-the-eye passing though, UCD just lacked a creative factor in what was an even contest for most of the first half. When the Gypsies were on the ball, the instincts of Christy Fagan and Killian Brennan ensured that they always looked like the more threatening attacking side.
UCD went close again after 20 minutes, this time through Paul O'Conor. A clever Darren Meenan pass caught the Bohs backline out and allowed O'Conor in one-on-one with Bohs 'keeper Chris O'Connor. The UCD midfielder dinked the ball over the Aussie goalkeeper, but it fell just wide.
Christy Fagan was a constant nuisance to the College defence and ended the stalemate after 25 minutes, scoring from the penalty spot. After a good passing move from Bohs, Fagan spun on the ball and attempted to play a through ball past Michael Leahy for Killian Brennan. Leahy handballed though and Fagan tucked the ball into the bottom left corner past the reach of Ger Barron.
Bohs were able to keep the ball a bit better from then on. Fagan forced a save out of Ger Barron with a header on the half hour mark, and showed his ability on several occasions by dazzling defenders with his array of step over’s and speed. The clearest chances still fell to UCD though, with Darren Meenan shooting no more than a yard over from 25 yards out after 39 minutes.
The Gypsies saw out the half comfortably though, and began the second half with a 15 minute spell of almost complete dominance. Killian Brennan went close three times from free kicks; rattling the crossbar from 40 yards out on 53 minutes, shooting wide closer to goal a minute later and forcing Ger Barron to push his shot out for a corner after 64 minutes.
Whereas the first half could have been said to have been fairly even, Bohs pulled away in the latter half. Keith Buckley went close after 64 minutes, shooting straight into the arms of Ger Barron and most of the second half chances fell to Bohs. Killian Brennan was a constant threat, as was Christy Fagan until he was taken off after 78 minutes. UCD never looked like scoring.
Ger O'Brien broke free of the UCD defence in the last minute and beat Ger Barron with a low shot which eventually went wide. Late on, Stephen Traynor and Killian Brennan both went close but it was to end with just a goal separating the two sides.
Bohemians: Chris O'Connor; Owen Heary, Ger O'Brien, Liam Burns, Aidan Price; Glenn Cronin (Gary Burke, 86), Keith Buckley (Lee Dixon, 82), Robert Bayly, Killian Brennan; Christy Fagan (Stephen Traynor, 78), Anto Flood.
Subs Not Used: Barry Murphy, Daniel Joyce, Eoin Fowler, Kevin Feely.
Bookings: G Cronin (36), O Heary (73).
UCD: Ger Barron; Sean Harding, Ciaran Nangle, David O'Connor, Michael Leahy; Paul Corry (Daniel Ledwith, 46), Dean Marshall, Paul O'Conor, Darren Meenan; Samir Belhout (Stephen Doyle, 68), Robbie Benson (Graham Rusk, 57).
Subs not used: Mark McGinley, Thomas Boyle, James Kavanagh, Cillian Morrison.
Bookings: S Harding (53).
Referee: Neil Doyle.
Extratime.ie Man of the Match: Christy Fagan.