League Report: Drogheda United 1 - 4 Waterford

Waterford celebrate

Waterford celebrate Credit: Paul Dolan (ETPhotos)

Full-back Darragh Leahy was Waterford's man of the moment on Friday night, scoring twice and setting up another in Waterford’s emphatic 4-1 defeat of Drogheda United at Weaver’s Park.

Drogheda started well, with new signing Zishim Bawa looking sharp behind main striker Frantz Pierrot. Bawa almost put the home side ahead on 11 minutes when he forced Waterford 'keeper Sam Sargeant into a fingertip save.

Two minutes later, Bawa had his first League of Ireland goal, sweeping in a low shot after determined approach play from Darragh Markey.

The home fans had barely finished celebrating when Waterford levelled the match. The Drogheda defence half-cleared a high ball, which Grant Horton volleyed back towards goal. It would have gone wide had Darragh Leahy not intervened, throwing himself at the ball and heading it home from ten yards.

There was further pain for the Drogheda faithful on 23 minutes when Connor Parsons split the home defence, allowing Darragh Power to pull the ball back for Niall O’Keeffe to finish well.

Down 2-1 at the break, Drogheda suffered another blow just beyond the hour mark when Darragh Leahy claimed his second goal of the game.

Barry Baggley took a short corner and then spun a wicked cross into the Drogheda box, which Leahy got a touch to, directing the ball into the net - just about - off the inside of the back post.

Drogheda had an opportunity to pull one back on 69 minutes when Conor Kane fired a shot on target, but it was straight at Sargeant. And two minutes later, Waterford made it four.

A free-kick was conceded right on the end line, and the delivery went right to the back post where Leahy sent a header back across goal. It was tantalisingly close to being a hat-trick for the full-back, but amidst the chaos of the Drogheda defence, it was Padraig Amond who nudged the ball over the line.

Drogheda still showed willing, with Markey and Bawa remaining lively, but there was no question which team was going home with the three points.

When the final whistle blew, the gulf between the teams wasn’t just three goals; it was the span of the league table, with Waterford heading home as league leaders and Drogheda settled unhappily at the foot of the league.

Drogheda United: Andrew Wogan; Hayden Cann, Jack Keaney, Evan Weir; Gary Deegan; Aaron McNally (Ryan Brennan64), Darragh Markey, Oisin Gallagher (Adam Foley 77), Conor Kane; Zishim Bawa; Frantz Pierrot (Warren Davis 64).

Subs Not Used: Jethren Barr, Killian Cailloce, Luke Heeney, Matthew O’Brien, Andrew Quinn, Emre Topcu.

Booked: Evan Weir (25), Gary Deegan (71).


Waterford: Sam Sargeant; Darragh Power, Kacper Radkowski, Grant Horton, Darragh Leahy; Maleace Asamoah (Rowan McDonald 73), Barry Baggley, Niall O’Keeffe (Romeo Akachukwu 90), Robbie McCourt (Ryan Burke 82); Connor Parsons; Padraig Amond (Ben McCormack 90).

Subs Not Used: Matthew Connor (gk), Gbemi Arubi, Joseph Forde, Dean McMenamy, Kacper Skwierczynski.

Booked: Rowan McDonal (75).


Referee: Paul Norton

Attendance: 2,059

extratime.com Player of the Match: Darragh Leahy (Waterford)