Substitute John O’Flynn struck to fire Finn Harps to a superb away win at Drogheda United tonight.
Drogheda United 0 Finn Harps 1
O’Flynn pounced in the 89th minute to give Harps the win. The striker latched onto a pass from Nathan Boyle – making his return to Harps colours tonight – and fired into the far corner past Drogheda goalkeeper Paul Skinner.
It was just the tonic for Harps, who climb to fourth and are just one point off second-placed Shelbourne and only five adrift of leaders UCD.
Boyle left Derry City a few weeks ago and is back for another spell at Finn Park.
With Ciaran O’Connor and Thomas McBride suspended and captain Ciaran Coll on holiday, Harps were light on numbers in a way, but Ollie Horgan’s men are firmly in the promotion shake-up now.
Boyle replaced Paddy McCourt on the stroke of half-time after he picked up an injury while an early enforced change saw Niall McGinley come in for the injured Mark Coyle.
After just two minutes, Coyle forced Skinner into save after connecting with a Jesse Devers cross.
At the other end in the second half, Ciaran Gallagher beat away a Sean Brennan free.
Gareth McCaffrey tested Gallagher, who then wonderfully saved from Brennan again.
Mark Doyle also tried his luck, but Gallagher reacted well to thwart his advances.
Just when it seemed as if the sides would end scoreless, O’Flynn popped up for a winner.
Drogheda United: Paul Skinner, Colm Deasy, Kevin Farragher, Ciaran Kelly, Sean Brennan (Rob Manley 87), Luke Gallagher, Jake Hyland, Richie Purdy, Mark Doyle, Chris Lyons, Gareth McCaffrey (Lee Duffy 71).
Finn Harps: Ciaran Gallagher, Keith Cowan, Aidan Friel, Sam Todd, Lee Toland, Mark Coyle (Niall McGinley 31), Gareth Harkin, Paddy McCourt (Nathan Boyle 45), Mikey Place, Mark Timlin, Jesse Devers (John O’Flynn 87).