Seán Bellew to run as an independent in local elections

Cllr Seán Bellew

Cllr Seán Bellew

Current Dundalk Town Councillor Seán Bellew has announced his intention to run as an independent in the Dundalk South constituency in the forthcoming local elections.

The Faughart man failed to have his name put forward for election by the Fianna Fáil party, whom he was elected for in 2009. A row last month led to a number of members refusing to pay their membership fees in protest at the decision.

Fianna Fáil will be running two candidates in Dundalk South – outgoing Louth County Council chairman Cllr Declan Breathnach and Blackrock-based businessman Stephen Egan, who runs Panama Café in the Market Square.

Seán, whose late uncle Tom was a well-known councillor and TD, has now opted to follow the route of Town Council chairman Cllr Eamonn O’Boyle, who is also standing as an independent candidate having been overlooked for a nomination by Fine Gael.

The local barrister has served on Dundalk Town Council for the last five years and is a prominent supporter of Dundalk FC.

Maxi reacts to Dundalk’s win over Athlone

Well-known Dundalk FC supporter Mark ‘Maxi’ Kavanagh has posted a video on YouTube giving his reaction to Dundalk’s 1-0 win over Athlone Town yesterday evening.

The Lilywhite fanatic said in the clip, which has gone viral in League of Ireland circles, that he never doubted that Richie Towell would come good for his side at the end and pokes fun at those who doubted the team. Check it out for yourself above.

Controversial late Towell penalty earns Dundalk narrow win over Athlone Town

DundalkCrest2010A controversial stoppage-time penalty from Richie Towell earned Dundalk a 1-0 victory against Athlone Town at Lissywoollen yesterday evening.

It looked for long stretches of the game as if the hosts were going to pick up their first points since being promoted, but referee Graham Kelly deemed that Declan Brennan impeded Darren Meenan and Towell made no mistake with his spot-kick in the third minute of added time.

Seán Byrne was dismissed for dissent immediately after the decision to compound Athlone’s misery as Dundalk recorded their sixth league win of the season.

Kelly left the field to a round of boos from the home supporters after his sending off decision, while Dundalk too felt aggrieved that Darren Meenan had earlier been hauled back by Declan Brennan only for play to be waved on.

At the end of a low-quality encounter, where scoring chances were rare and those that were created were wasted, it looked as if Athlone had done enough to secure the first league point of the new campaign in their ninth attempt.

Despite playing without their three first-choice centre-backs and their regular goalkeeper due to injury and suspension, they defended manfully and certainly wouldn’t have been flattered if the game ended in a stalemate.

Athlone’s James O’Brien blasted the ball into the side-netting from 12 yards out in the first minute, while Philip Gorman saw his curling effort midway through the second half loop narrowly wide. Dundalk netminder Peter Cherrie was also forced into an unorthodox save from Seán Byrne late on.

Towell, Meenan and Patrick Hoban all had opportunities to test Craig Sexton in the Athlone goal but spurned their chances. Ruiadhrí Higgins did manage to direct his 25-yard free on target but Sexton easily smothered the tame effort.

Long balls over the top were the primary source of these half-chances and Dundalk rarely looked like title challengers.

James O’Brien and Meenan were the main creative influences but both teams struggled to get sufficient support for their solitary strikers and failed to pick holes in their opponents’ defensive alignments.

Kelly’s decision not to award a penalty for the pull on Byrne’s jersey in the 76th minute drew plenty of ire from the sizable body of away supporters in the ground, but old cliche about contentious decisions evening themselves out certainly was rendered apt when Kelly pointed to the spot in the final minute of injury-time for what looked like legal and minimal contact between Brennan and Meenan.

Athlone’s disbelief at the decision was obvious as their players crowded around the arbiter, which in turn resulted in Byrne being sent off on a straight red card for dissent.

In the final decisive act of the game, Towell struck an immaculate penalty low to the bottom corner of the Athlone Town net, a strike that brought Dundalk back level with Cork City and broke the hearts of the home side.

Athlone Town: Craig Sexton; Stephen Quigley (Ian Sweeney 86), Conor McMahon, Declan Brennan, Barry Clancy; Mark Hughes; Kealon Dillon, Seán Byrne, James O’Brien, Sean Brennan (Jason Marks 73); Philip Gorman.

Subs not used: Graham Rusk.

Dundalk: Peter Cherrie; Seán Gannon, Mark Rossiter, Andy Boyle, Dane Massey; Ruaidhrí Higgins; Darren Meenan, John Mountney (David McMillan 60), Richie Towell, Daryl Horgan (Kurtis Byrne HT); Patrick Hoban (Mark Griffin 82).

Subs not used:  Brian Gartland, Chris Shields, Simon Kelly, Gabriel Sava (GK).

Referee: Graham Kelly

Source: RTÉ Sport

Sligo rage that Setanta Cup final is not fixed for The Showgrounds

Tallaght Stadium will host the Setanta Cup final on May 10th

Tallaght Stadium will host the Setanta Cup final on May 10th

In a statement issued yesterday, Sligo Rovers have expressed ‘great disappointment’ that their home ground, The Showgrounds, was not chosen as the venue for this year’s Setanta Sports Cup final.

The contest will see the Bit O’Red take on Dundalk in the final, which will be played at Tallaght Stadium on 10 May.

A statement released by Sligo Rovers read: “The club’s reaction is one of great disappointment that The Showgrounds will not host the final.”

Sligo Rovers chairman Dermot Kelly said: “It would have been a great credit for all the improvements and investment we have made to the ground in the last number of years to host the game.”

However, Dundalk were never in favour of bringing the final to Sligo, which would have effectively handed home advantage to Ian Baraclough’s side.

When contacted by RTÉ Sport, Dundalk chairman Ciaran Bond said: “You have to play a final at the best stadium in country and after the Aviva it’s Tallaght Stadium.

“A cup final of this magnitude should be played in a neutral venue.”

Sligo’s Kelly added: “The club would have been confident of a capacity crowd and to bring the match to a venue in Dublin that has attracted diminishing attendances in finals – in which the tenants of Tallaght Stadium have participated – makes little sense.”

“The region would have backed the occasion massively but it’s likely now to get ‘lost’ in South County Dublin.”

“Sligo Rovers made a proposal to the Setanta Sports Cup committee to host the game for a smaller cost, a likely sell-out crowd and less travelling time for those attending.”

Dundalk left to rue late Finn strike

Dundalk supporter David Lennon looks on at Oriel Park last night in front of a packed Shed. Picture: Jason McGee

Dundalk supporter David Lennon looks on at Oriel Park last night in front of a packed Shed. Picture: Jason McGee

Dundalk squandered the chance to maintain their two point lead at the top of the Premier Division table when Ronan Finn’s injury-time goal rescued 10 man Shamrock Rovers a 2-2 draw at Oriel Park last night.

To add to the Lilywhites’ woes, captain Stephen O’Donnell was stretchered off just before half-time with a suspect crucicate ligament injury that could rule the midfielder out for the season.

Rovers looked to be heading for defeat until Finn popped up on the right of the area in the 92nd minute to fire low past Peter Cherrie to rescue his side a share of the spoils.

Trevor Croly’s side had got off to a dream start when Ciaran Kilduff fired them ahead in the 13th minute after being slipped through by Finn.

However, Dundalk were gifted a route back into the game when Rovers hit the self destruct button on 56 minutes.

Firstly, Richie Towell levelled from the spot after his header came off the arm of Jason McGuinness. Then, as the home side celebrated, Rovers captain Conor Kenna was shown a straight red card for clashing with Daryl Horgan.

With the man advantage, Dundalk pressed for the lead and found it when Darren Meenan made it 2-1 with a cool finish under Barry Murphy in the 62nd minute.

The home side had chances to seal the game late on with Horgan and Meenan both missing one-on-one chances and they were made pay for those misses when Finn popped up with his late strike that means Dundalk fall off the summit on goal difference with Cork City now leading the way.

Dundalk: Cherrie; Gannon, Gartland, Boyle, Massey; Higgins; Horgan (Shields 82), Towell, O’Donnell (Meenan 45), Mountney; Hoban (McMillan 84). Subs not used: Byrne, Griffin, Rossiter, Sava.

Shamrock Rovers: Murphy; Madden, Kenna, McGuinness, Heaney; Robinson; McCabe (Waters 66), McPhail (Bayly 68), Finn; Kilduff, Zayed (Cornwall 59). Subs not used: O’Connor, Sheppard, Hyland.

Referee: P McLaughlin (Monaghan).

Tallaght Stadium to host Setanta Cup final between Dundalk and Sligo Rovers

Tallaght Stadium

Tallaght Stadium

Tallaght Stadium has been confirmed as the venue for this year’s Setanta Sports Cup final on Saturday May 10th.

Dundalk and Sligo Rovers will face off on the day, with both clubs hoping to win the competition for the first time in their respective histories.

Stephen Kenny’s side booked their place in the final with a 3-1 aggregate victory over Shamrock Rovers in the semi-final. Two Richie Towell penalties helped them to a 2-1 win in Tallaght before Chris Shields struck to secure a 1-0 win in the second leg on Tuesday.

Sligo, who have serious cup pedigree in recent years, booked their place in the final with an emphatic 7-1 aggregate victory over last year’s league winners St Patrick’s Athletic.

There had been speculation that the final could be played in The Showgrounds in Sligo or at a neutral venue such as Athlone or Longford but Tallaght will suit Dundalk as it means they have less of a journey.

Tallaght was also the venue when the club lost the 2011 decider 2-0 to Shamrock Rovers, although the Lilywhites were angered at that time that they had to play at a venue that was not neutral.

Kick-off for the final will be 4pm. For the final Dundalk FC have been allocated the East Stand. Tickets will be €15 for adults, €10 for OAPS, unwaged and students and €5 for U14s.

Shields goal ensures Dundalk’s path into Setanta Cup final

DundalkCrest2010Dundalk FC last night booked themselves a place in next month’s Setanta Sports Cup final against Sligo Rovers with a 1-0 victory over Shamrock Rovers at Oriel Park last night.

Chris Shields’ goal two minutes into the second half proved the difference between the sides on the night, with the Lilywhites advancing to the final on Saturday May 10th with a 3-1 aggregate lead having beaten Trevor Croly’s side 2-1 in Tallaght three weeks earlier.

Dundalk had the better of the chances throughout but did have to defend resolutely at times to keep the Hoops out.

The home side’s best opening of the first half came on the half hour mark when Andy Boyle headed a corner over. Five minutes before the break through, Peter Cherrie had to be at his best to keep a deflected shot from Ronan Finn out.

The breakthrough finally arrived two minutes after the restart when Shields met Ruaidhrí Higgins’ free at the back post to prod it home past Craig Hyland.

Both sides had their chances after that with John Mountney bringing a fine low save out of Hyland before Karl Sheppard blazed over from close range.

Rovers kept pressing until the end but never really troubled Cherrie as Stephen Kenny’s side held out to book the club only their second ever Setanta Cup final appearance.

The venue for the May 10th final will be decided on Thursday while the fixture means that Dundalk’s scheduled league clash at home to neighbours Drogheda Utd on May 9th will have to be arranged.

Dundalk: Cherrie; Gannon, Boyle, Rossiter, Massey; Shields, Higgins; Mountney, Towell (O’Donnell 88), Horgan (Meenan 77); McMillan (Hoban 70).

Shamrock Rovers: Hyland; Cornwall, Heaney (Kehoe 76), Kenna, Byrne; Finn (Kilduff 76), Robinson, Bayly, Waters (Brennan 69); Zayed, Sheppard.

Referee: Raymond Crangle.

Attendance: 1,976.

Dundalk launch student offer for Shamrock Rovers matches this week


Dundalk are running two superb offers for primary school kids and secondary students ahead of this week’s two matches against Shamrock Rovers.

Stephen Kenny’s side take on the Tallaght outfit in the second leg of the Setanta Sports Cup semi-final on Tuesday night at Oriel Park before hosting them again in the league on Friday.

For the semi-final tie, which Dundalk hold a 2-1 first leg advantage in, the club are offering free admission to all children under the age of 12 who are accompanied by an adult while those aged between 12-18 will get a discount entry of just €5.

The same offer will also apply for the league match on Good Friday.

Further details on



Dundalk go top after victory over UCD

DundalkCrest2010Dundalk moved top of the SSE Airtricity League Premier Division table with a 4-1 win away to UCD at the UCD Bowl in Dublin.

With Cork City being held at home to Sligo Rovers and both Drogheda Utd and Shamrock Rovers losing their respective games, the result meant that Stephen Kenny’s side go two points clear.

Dundalk had to come from behind to claim the win, however, after the Students took the lead through Gary Burke on 23 minutes.

Patrick Hoban ensured the sides went off level at the break though as he glanced home a Daryl Horgan cross two minutes before half-time to leave it 1-1 at the interval.

Captain Stephen O’Donnell then put his side ahead in the 58th minute after racing on to Hoban’s knockdown and in less than two minutes the game was effectively over as a contest when a game of ping-pong inside the six yard box resulted in the ball cannoning off Mark Langtry and into his own net for an own goal.

Things then went from bad to worse for the home side when Hugh Douglas was shown a straight red card on 75 minutes after hauling down Hoban as he raced through on goal.

Hoban would have the last laugh, however, as he turned home David McMillan’s cross four minutes from the end to complete a fine win for the Lilywhites.

UCD: Conor O’Donnell; Gareth Matthews, Hugh Douglas, Tomas Boyle, Mark Langtry; Samir Belhout, Robert Benson, Gary Burke, Robbie Creevy, Chris Mulhall (Thomas O’Halloran, 80); Cillian Morrison (James Kavanagh, 81).

DUNDALK: Peter Cherrie, Sean Gannon, Andy Boyle, Mark Rossiter, Dane Massey; Kurtis Byrne (David McMillan, 84), Chris Shields, Richie Towell, Stephen O’Donnell (Ruaidhri Higgins, 68), Daryl Horgan (Darren Meenan, 79); Patrick Hoban.

Referee: Robert Rogers (Dublin).