Five-star Bohs blitz poor Pats
Bohemians 5-1 St Patrick's Ath
Two heavy defeats from their two local derbies so far this season had given Bohemians fans reason to dread these Dublin fixtures.
But it's a case of 'can we play you every week?' as far as the Gypsies supporters are concerned after their 5-1 thrashing of a dismal St Patrick's Athletic at a sun-soaked Dalymount Park yesterday.
Bohs fans had almost forgotten how to celebrate a goal as Keith Long's outfit were on a most-unwanted run of six straight league games without scoring.
The home side were helped by a most generous, even non-existent, Saints defence which found itself 4-0 down after 31 minutes. The win eases the fears of a relegation battle which had been creeping into the Bohemian mindset but apart from a glance at the league table, this heavy loss shows just how far off the pace St Pat's are in the title race.
Defeat in the Dublin derby against Shamrock Rovers next Friday would put the pressure on boss Liam Buckley, though he insists that the target of a top-three finish is achievable, but it's all smiles for Bohs boss Keith Long after a difficult period.
"It was nice to follow up last week's FAI Cup win with a really good performance," said Long.
"The sun was shining and everything was going for us. Izzy, Jake, they set the tone for us and they got on the end of things. I don't think their centre-halves could handle Izzy. When he is on his game he is a real handful and yesterday we have obviously maximised it."
Bohs were in control of this fixture within four minutes, goals from Roberto Lopes and Ismahil Akinade giving them a shock lead. Lopes was unmarked in the box to tap home a Dan Byrne cross for the lead goal while poor concentration from Lee Desmond opened the door for Akinade to score a second.
The Pats defence was asleep again on 13 minutes, Jake Kelly running forward and unmarked onto a a loose ball as he took his time to finish well past Brendan Clarke. On 31 minutes it was 4-0 to the home side, Kelly again on target with a tap-in inside the boss after Pats failed to clear from an Akinade chance.
The Saints got one back on 78 minutes, defender Ian Bermingham with the finish from Jamie McGrath's corner, but more misery awaited the away side. On 81 minutes Sean Hoare clumsily challenged Akinade in the box, the outcome a red card for Hoare and a penalty, which Kurtis Byrne struck home.
"It was ridiculous defending from our points of view. I'm disappointed with the goals we gave away, it was the worst defending in quite a while," said boss Buckley. "We seem to be throwing in the odd really poor performance and that was poor."