Sligo off to flying start - Airtricity League roundup

Anthony Elding, Sligo Rovers. Picture: SPORTSFILE

New signing Anthony Elding made it two goals in as many games to get champions Sligo Rovers off to the perfect start in defence of their title as they beat FAI Cup holders Derry City 1-0 at the Brandywell as the Airtricity League season kicked off in earnest.

The game's only goal came on 31 minutes when David Cawley and Raff Cretaro worked the opening for striker Elding to shoot past Ger Doherty.

Shamrock Rovers missed a penalty as they had to settle for a frustrating point from a 0-0 draw at Dundalk who finished with ten men.

The chief incident in a tight game arrived on 68 minutes when home defender Dane Massey took down Hoops' winger Billy Dennehy in the area. But Peter Cherrie brilliantly saved Gary McCabe's spot kick.

Dundalk's Massey was then sent off in stoppage time at the death for a second yellow card offence following a foul on Karl Sheppard.

A goal from substitute Shane McFaul gave St. Patrick's Athletic a narrow win over Drogheda United at Richmond Park, a game watched by Republic of Ireland boss Giovanni Trapattoni.

Seven minutes after coming on, midfielder McFaul struck for the game's only goal on 65 minutes. Drogheda failed to clear a corner and in the ensuring scramble McFaul eventually blasted the ball past Gabriel Sava in the Drogheda goal.

Kevin Devaney was Bohemians' hero as they beat ten man UCD 2-1 at Dalymount in a match of two penalties.

Bohs took the lead on 22 minutes when Chris Lyons scored emphatically from the spot after UCD left-back Mark Langtry was harshly sent off for a dubious foul on Lyons.

David McMillan won and converted a penalty for UCD's equaliser ten minutes into the second half.

But Devaney won it for Bohs when turning onto a loose ball in the box following Karl Moore's cross on 65 minutes.

Devaney might indeed have had a hat-trick as he subsequently shot against a post, as he had done in the first half.

The evergreen Jason Byrne was Bray Wanderers' match winner with the only goal of the game as they beat Shelbourne 1-0 at the Carlisle Grounds.

Shels had midfielder Paul Crowley sent off after 27 minutes for bad tackle on Daire Doyle.

Byrne then got the only goal of the game - the 194th of his League of Ireland career - in the 67th minute when heading home Martin Waters' cross.

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