Home Football Dundalk Sweep Shamrock Rovers Aside To Win The EA Sports Cup Final

Dundalk Sweep Shamrock Rovers Aside To Win The EA Sports Cup Final

INPHO/Tommy Dickson

Dundalk claimed the first major piece of silverware on offer this season by defeating Shamrock Rovers in the EA Sports Cup final on Saturday.

Both sides came into this match in tremendous form, which in turn suggested that this would be a tight contest. Changes for both sides, primarily a Dundalk defence that saw recalls for goalkeeper Gabriel Sava and defenders Sean Hoare and Shane Grimes, with Gary Rogers, Brian Gartland and the Dane Massey, carrying a knock, all on the bench.

The Lilywhites broke the deadlock very early on as free a header from David McMillan put Dundalk 1-0 up within the first five minutes.

From there, Stephen Bradley’s side sought to find a way back into the match but were finding space hard to come bu. Trevor Clarke and Brandon Miele looked to be the most likely threat but even they couldn’t get their natural game flowing. They did have some chances, however, as Dave Webster hist the post and David McAllister struck wide with a speculative effort but Dundalk went in at the break 1-0 up.

The ‘home’ side’s task became much harder twenty minutes into the second half as Aaron Bolger was sent off for a second yellow card. With Rovers pushing for an equaliser they began to leave more space at the back, and Dundalk took full advantage as Patrick McEleney, as he has done so often this season, rattled in a fantastic strike to double his side’s advantage and give Rovers a mountain to climb.

Substitute Thomas Stewart put the icing on the cake late on as he ran through to put to the final nail in Sham Rovers’ coffin, 3-0 on the day to make the scoreline that bit more comprehensive.

Dundalk’s sterling run of success under Stephen Kenny continues, with the manager tasting victory in this competition, incredibly, for a sixth time across two clubs.

For Shamrock Rovers, meanwhile, disappointment today but they will have a chance to enact their revenge, and book their place in another cup final in the process, when they meet Dundalk again in the semi-finals of the FAI Cup next month.

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