Holland gives Bohs the blues
Bohemians 1 Waterford 2
A season which promised so much for Bohemians is turning into something of a slog, the Gypsies' hopes of European qualification via the league harmed by a loss at home to Waterford last night.
And it was three moments of class which won the points for the Blues, Tom Holland's first goal for the club a thing of beauty, the finish coming after superb build-up play from Kevin Lynch and Michael O'Connor.
Bohs are, of course, still in the FAI Cup and will play Shamrock Rovers in the semi-final, if they can beat Crumlin United in Monday's quarter-final.
But their league form has petered out, two wins from the last nine in the Premier Division as Derry City and St Patrick's Athletic lurk right behind them in the race for third place, the only crumb of comfort from last night's games the fact that Pat's also dropped points, at home to UCD.
Keith Long was hamstrung by injuries and, mindful of Monday's Cup game, gave a chance to teenagers like Ross Tierney, Dawson Devoy and Ryan Graydon, and Tierney delivered another moment of magic with an equalising goal.
But the night would belong to the Blues, gaining comfort from the fact that they put some distance between themselves and the sides below them, and the emergence of former Ireland youth cap Holland will be a major plus to Alan Reynolds as he plots a course for next season, if he can hang on to the talented midfielder.
Bohs could have been in front after only nine minutes, three chances in the space of a few seconds as a block on the line, a shot off the crossbar and a save from keeper Matt Connor denied the home side.
Those misses proved costly. On 12 minutes, Waterford took the lead. Rory Feely got his head to Georgie Poynton's corner and while keeper James Talbot got a touch it wasn't enough to keep it out.
The goal gave Waterford an injection of confidence and they were dominant for a long spell.
Bohs needed a last-gasp block from Rob Cornwall to prevent Zak Elbouzedi from scoring on 14 minutes and five minutes later Bohs escaped again, as a shot from English striker Walter Figueira came off the post when he appeared to have the measure of Talbot.
Bohs weathered that storm and began to take a grip on things, Ryan Graydon unlucky not to score on 38 minutes as his shot was saved by keeper Connor while just before the break Scott Allardice was unable to find the target with a headed effort from Wade-Slater's corner.
Sub Danny Grant helped Bohs get back into the game with his first touch, his cross setting up Ross Tierney to level the scores on 57 minutes.
Bohs, yet to come from behind and win a league game this season, pressed hard for the lead goal, Dawson Devoy going close and Andre Wright unlucky not to score.
But with seven minutes left, the away side came back for the winner - Lynch with a fine ball from the left-back slot, O'Connor with a cheeky backheel and Holland's superb finish.
More pain for Bohs as they were denied an injury-time penalty.