A late Bohs own-goal gave Limerick’s new manager Neil McDonald his first win and a much needed three points in Dalymount Park on Tuesday evening.
Brazilian Rodrigo Tosi had initially given Limerick the lead after 16 minutes before a Georgie Poynton goal levelled for Bohs. However, a Dan Byrne own goal with just eight minutes to go gave the visitors a crucial three points.
Limerick hadn’t won in six league games and they started the game off nervously unable to get a hold of the ball. However neat play from Shaun Kelly and Lee Lynch on the right led to a cross from Lynch being headed down to Rodrigo Tosi but Cornwall managed to do enough to put it behind for a corner on from the edge of the six yard box.
Three minutes later and Tosi was 20 yards out but instead of putting the vacant Lynch in on the right he chose to drag a shot wide.
Bohs for their part in the opening 15 minutes were struggling to get anything going until Georgie Poynton put in a splendid ball from the right for Dinny Corcoran but Limerick managed to clear their lines.
Bohs’ sluggish start to the game continued as the opening goal came after 16 minutes. A Bastien Hery free kick from just inside the Bohs half was looped towards Tosi at the back post and his wonderful lob header flew past as a helpless Shane Supple.
The Gypsies tried to respond but Paddy Kavanagh’s cross from the left and a one-two at the edge of the box between Corcoran and Lorcan Fitzgerald ultimately ended in disappointment.
The home side were really struggling in the middle of the park with countless wayward passes. Oscar Brennan was extremely off the pace.
Just before the 25 minute mark Limerick were once again threatening. First Shane Duggan swung in a very dangerous low ball from the left that avoided everyone and then Lynch curled in an inviting cross from the right for Tosi but Supple managed to paw it away.
Brennan was once again at fault a minute later as he gave the ball away to Lynch at the edge of the box but luckily for the Bohs man, Lynch’s shot was straight at Supple.
Bohs somehow managed to get back level against the run of play just before the half hour mark after great play from Keith Ward and Kavanagh. Kavanagh flicked in Ward who picked out Poynton on the right hand side of the box and his finish was never been saved by Freddy Hall.
Ward had a spring in his step and was causing trouble a couple of minutes later again on the left when he crossed low and hard but the Limerick defence cleared it from the six yard box.
Oscar Brennan then had a superb chance to put Bohs ahead on 36 minutes when Fitzgerald’s corner fell to him seven yards out and he took too long to get his shot away which was eventually blocked and cleared.
Ward was proving Bohs’ saviour. His link up play was causing Limerick severe trouble and just before half-time he had a firmly hit shot that just skimmed the post.
As the second half kicked off, it was Ward again on the prowl for the home side as he attempted an audacious chip from 20 yards instead of passing to Kavanagh on the left. The shot was about 4 yards wide though.
Moments later the visitors went closest to getting ahead when a wonderful through ball from Lynch put Chiedozie Ogbene in the clear one-on-one with Supple but his shot came off the right hand post.
Lynch was proving to be the thorn in Bohs side and once again he got down the right on 54 minutes to cross in a great cross for Tosi but the Brazilian could just edge his header wide of the left-hand post.
Chris Mulhall had the ball in the Bohs net on the hour mark after a great ball through again from Lynch but the assistant ruled him to be offside in what was an extremely close call.
Bohs then had an opportunity of their own three minutes later when Oscar Brennan had a well drilled shot parried behind by Hall and then Fitzgerald had an opportunity with a half-volley from the resulting corner but his looping shot wouldn’t come down.
The game was so evenly poised approaching twenty minutes to go and another opportunity came Bohs’ way when Poynton was released on the right by the brilliant Ward and his low cross was tipped away by Hall and Barry Cotter did enough to block the rebound from Kavanagh. Cotter was taken off however with a resulting leg injury.
Limerick began to creep back into the search for a lead and Shane Duggan’s deflected shot on 77 minutes could have gone anywhere 20 yards out but luckily for Supple his shot flew behind for a corner.
With 8 minutes to go Limerick took the lead in clumsy circumstances after some great work again by Lynch who skipped past Fitzgerald on the right and his cross was headed back across goal by Ogbene. His goal bound header was then taken over the line by Dan Byrne.
Duggan nearly made it three with five minutes to go when he received the ball 20 yards out and his shot was tipped over by Supple. The resulting corner resulted in a scramble where Dean Clarke nearly got on the end of it but his header was blocked.
Bohs right back Dylan Hayes then received his marching orders for a late challenge on Ogbene as full-time approached. Lynch could also have followed him when he pulled Jamie Doyle down when he appeared to be the first man but the referee only showed yellow much to the crowds frustration.
Bohemians: Shane Supple, Dylan Hayes, Lorcan Fitzgerald, Rob Cornwall, Dan Byrne, Dinny Corcoran, Keith Ward (Philly Gannon 84), Paddy Kavanagh (Jamie Doyle 84), Oscar Brennan (Ian Morris 78), Fuad Sule, George Poynton
Subs not used: Greg Murray, Kaleem Simon, Dean Casey, Eoghan Morgan
Booked: Lorcan Fitzgerald 73,
Red Cards: Dylan Hayes 90
Limerick FC: Freddy Hall, Shuan Kelly, Robbie Williams, Lee Lynch, Shane Duggan, Chris Mulhall (Dean Clarke 77), Tommy Robson, Barry Cotter (Tony Whitehead 71), Bastien Hery, Rodrigo Tosi, Chiedozie Ogbene
Subs not used: Tommy Holland, Paul O’Conor, Shane Tracy, Ian Turner, Stephen Kenny
Booked: Shane Duggan 66, Lee Lynch 90
Red Cards: None
Referee: Graham Kelly
Extratime.ie Man of the Match: Lee Lynch