The season so far for St Pat’s

St. Pat’s impressive form from the start of the season has been slightly hindered with two defeats against Shamrock Rovers and UCD respectively.

The Saints had made a great start to the 2010 season, retaining top spot until Monday when Dundalk overtook them when they beat Shamrock Rovers 2 – 1.

However, overall it is fair to say things could be worse and the appointment of Pete Mahon as manager of the Saints has seen them lose only three games this season.

The former Bohemians and UCD manager was appointed on a short term basis last season as a replacement for Jeff Kenna, who resigned after being knocked out of the FAI Cup by first division side Waterford United.

Mahon led the Saints out of a difficult domestic season, avoided relegation and his long term appointment as manager is being justified this season.

St Pats came out of the traps flying at the start of the season, picking up six points in their opening games against Galway United and Shamrock Rovers, beating them both 2-0.

Mahon’s side continued their winning form with a 3-0 win over UCD. Vinny Faherty got his second of the season and Ryan Guy bagged two late goals to cap off the performance against the Students.

The Saints dropped their first points of the season in a 0-0 draw away to Dundalk, who are shaping up to be the biggest challengers for the title, now ahead of Pats.

Newly promoted Sporting Fingal, managed by former Saint Liam Buckley, were the next team to hold St Pats 0-0 at Richmond Park.

This result saw Pats go one point clear of Bohemians at the top of the table and set up the Dublin derby between Pats and Bohs nicely.

The first goal St Pats conceded this season came at the home of the current champions, Bohemians, at Dalymount Park.

Faherty got on the score sheet again in a first half that saw Bohs threaten the Saint’s goal on numerous occasions.

Pat Fenlon’s side eventually made the breakthrough in the opening minutes of the second half but the score line and result was a reflection on the quality and maturity of the Pats defence under Mahon, especially after last season.

Pats’ unbeaten streak was finally ended when Drogheda visited Inchicore and a goal four minutes into injury time saw the Drogs steal it with a 1-0 victory.

A surprising result for a team situated near the bottom of the table to come away with all three points from Richmond Park.

The manner of St Pat’s response to their first loss of the season speaks volumes for the team’s character.

A 4-0 win away to Bray Wanderers saw the Saints bounce back into winning form, two former Wanderers Paul Byrne and Gareth Coughlan netting two of the four goals.

Pats hosted Sligo Rovers at Richmond Park in a game that saw the Saints beat Rovers 1-0 and end the last undefeated streak of the season, thanks to a David McAllister wonder strike.

A 2-0 victory away to Galway United made it three wins out of three since Pats’ loss to Drogheda, including scoring seven goals without reply.

Their losses to Shamrock Rovers and UCD can be amended with a win over their closest opponents Dundalk who they play on May 7.

Also, a chance for early silverware beckons as their Setanta Cup run has seen them defeat Linfield and Sligo Rovers and reach the final against Bohemians, which is to be played in Tallaght Stadium on May 15.

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