Bray Wanderers 1 Athlone Town 0
Bray climbed back up to second place in the SSE Airtricity League First Division with a hard fought but deserved win over Athlone Town.
Cole Omorehiomwan’s late winner settled the issue at the Carlisle Grounds on Friday as the Green and White’s remained unbeaten at home this season in all competitions.
With 16 minutes of normal times left on the clock, Harry Groome threaded a pass over the top to match the run of substitute Jake Walker.
From near the right end-line at the corner of the six-yard area, he cut the ball back. Omorehiomwan got there ahead of a defender to roll the ball in from six-yards for his fourth goal of the campaign.
With Cobh going down 3-1 to Waterford at St. Colman’s Park the same evening, the two results saw Wanderers move above Ramblers.
The Seasiders made four changes from the aide who’d been defeated last week against Cobh as goalkeeper Stephen McGuinness, acting skipper Dane Massey and midfielders Harry Groome and Guillermo Almirall all coming in.
U19 duo Leon Ajala and Jack Ross came in amongst the substitutes.
The ‘Town had one change to their starting 11 with Matthew Teal replacing Jamar Campion-Hynes.
Somehow the contest was score-less at the break after a late flurry of chances.
Twice McGuinness denied Frantz Pierrot in the 35th minute after the striker broke clear, by palming down the initial shot and reacting to push away the follow-up.
Four minutes before the break, former Seagull Enda Minogue thwarted Ben Feeney after Lyon’s clever back-heel.
Then in the 42nd minute, McGuinness stood up strong to parry Adam Lennon’s effort one on one.
Seconds later at the other end, Massey flicked on Max Murphy’s corner. But close in, Feeney’s attempt came back off the crossbar.
With Dario Castelo reportedly taking charge of the Midlanders team affairs from the dug-out, Wanderers had the better of the second half exchanges.
Groome’ threaded pass in the 58th minute released Jack Hudson to centre from the right by-line. On his 50th appearance for his home town club, Chris Lyons headed against the bar. He gathered the loose ball to tee up Murphy who drilled wide from just inside the penalty area.
Then in the 70th, sub Zach Donohue whipped in a deep inviting cross from the left flank. Feeney lost his marker at the back post to connect with a diving header close in. But Minogue made a point blank save on the line to somehow keep the ball out.
Bray Wanderers: Stephen McGuinness; Max Murphy, Cole Omorehiomwan, Dane Massey (Lorcan Fitzgerald 71), Jack Hudson (Jake Walker 70); Guillermo Almirall; Luka Lovic (Zach Donohue half time), Harry Groome; Ger Shortt (Callum Thompson 70), Chris Lyons (Conor Davis 81), Ben Feeney.
Subs not used: Conor Knight, Leon Ajala, Jack Ross.
Booked: Lovic 22.
Athlone Town: Enda Minogue; Oisin Duffy, German Fuentes Rodriguez, Noah van Geenen, Matthew Leal (Jack Kavanagh 79); Adam Lennon (Ryan 68), Aaron Connolly, Abdikadir, Valerii Dolia (Isaie Louis 75); Patrick Hickey; Frantz Pierrot.
Subs not used: Charles Mutawe, Aaron McBride, Nazar Zubkov, Josh McGlone, Matthew Baker, Vlad Velikin.
Booked: van Geenen 41, Connolly 51.
Referee: Daniel Murphy (Dublin).
Pictures: Peter Minogue.
Mint Plus man if the match: Guillermo Almirall.