St Patrick's Athletic made it three wins on the bounce after an excellent 2-0 win over UCD on Monday night in Richmond Park. Goals from Eoin Doyle and Mark Doyle set up the victory to send the Saints top of the league after the opening six games.
It was an ideal night for football in Richmond Park and despite the dropping temperatures, the pitch was in immaculate condition as the ball fizzed along the carpet surface.
The opening exchanges were cagey enough and despite enjoying the majority of possession, St Pats never really threatened Lorcan Healy in the UCD goal.
They did create a few half chances in the opening 15 minutes. Jack Scott's well delivered cross met the head of Mark Doyle who's tame effort was straight at Healy. Doyle had a volley from the edge of the area minutes later, but his effort sailed well wide of the target.
Doyle turned provider five minutes later when Billy King set him free down the left hand side. He did well to direct a decent ball into the area an it did find Darragh Burns at the back post, but the angle proved too tight for the latter who blazed the ball into the side netting.
The side netting had been rattled just five minutes previous, when Billy King unleashed a rocket with his left foot and his swerving effort looked as if it had crept in, but it rattled into the side netting, much to the surprise of a section of Saints fans behind the goal who's brief celebrations were cut short upon realisation.
St Pats were pushing for an opener and 33 minutes in, they finally found the breakthrough. Darragh Burns was lively on the right throughout the first half and his efforts finally paid off. He drilled the ball across the six yard box and it was Eoin Doyle who flung himself at the ball, making enough connection with it to bundle it home for the night's opening goal.
The student's struggled to create any opportunities but their main chance came when John Ryan's cross found Colm Whelan on the edge of the six yard area, but the ball bounced awkwardly for the UCD striker and it came off his chest and safely into the hands of Joseph Annang who comfortably gathered possession.
In injury time of the first half, The Saints went close to doubling their lead when Eoin Doyle's flick from Darragh Burns' corner almost crossed the line, but it was cleared off the line and away from the danger.
Doyle's flick proved to be the final action of the half as referee Ray Matthews ended the half, with the Saints ahead by the minimum at the half time break.
The second half was much the same, with the Saints looking as dangerous as ever as they pushed to double their advantage.
Eoin Doyle had two quick fire chances early in the second half but both of his efforts were well saved by Healy as he got down well to deny the St Pats attacker.
After 58 minutes of play, The Saints finally doubled their lead. Anto Breslin's cross from the left was well cleared by the UCD defence, but Mark Doyle was on the edge of the area lurking. He beautifully brought the ball under control with his chest before volleying the ball home terrifically to give them a two goal advantage.
The Inchicore side controlled the game well after the second goal and they nullified the UCD attack. Although they created a limited amount of chances, they looked comfortable in controlling possession and seeing the game out.
Mark Doyle and Eoin Doyle both had efforts blocked in the closing stages but were unable to find the target.
UCD begin to find their stride late in the second half and they enjoyed a spell of possession, but the St Pats defence stood tall and were excellent, particularly Tom Grivotsi who excelled at centre back.
Ronan Coughlan almost added a third when Forrester played him in with a mouth watering pass. Coughlan did well to take the ball around Lorcan Healy, but he was unable to generate enough power in his shot as UCD got back to clear the danger. Forrester forced Healy into a save seconds later but the UCD goalkeeper got down well to save Forrester's effort.
Forrester's chance was the final play as The Saints held on to ensure the three points stayed in Inchicore with the win sending them to the summit after six games.
Next up is a tricky trip away to Derry City on Friday night with kick off at 7.45pm at The Brandywell.