Cork City, still in the bottom three but with their sights on the top four, got back to winning ways by frustrating Bohemians at a chilly Dalymount as life without ex-manager John Caulfield commenced.

An interim management team of John Cotter, Colin Healy and Alan Bennett will be pleased with the endeavour of the visitors, who put an end to any ideas Bohs had of winning the title race with a gritty victory.

Sloppy Bohs defending allowed Conor McCarthy to steal in for the game's only goal, a sold-out Dalymount treated to an event lacking quality as Cork did what was needed to do to enjoy that winning feeling again, without showing much in the way of offensive quality.

The sun was fading in Phibsboro as the game began, with the breeze a factor and the pitch a bit uneven. Cork were intent on making a point about their attitude and credentials after the change of management during the week. James Tilley and Gearoid Morrissey began brightly, but Bohs looked comfortable at the back.

However, the surprise side of the Premier Division struggled to get their passing game going, the classy Danny Mandroiu attempting consistently to get involved. Cork's lack of confidence was showcased on 17 minutes when veteran keeper Mark McNulty and Sean McLoughlin had a misunderstanding at a cross and narrowly survived.

However, they dug in, and got their reward. It came from a set-piece, which Bohs dealt with so poorly in a manner to bely their brilliant defensive record this season.

Dalymount was shocked when it was City who took the lead on 22 minutes. James Tilley's free-kick exposed poor defending and McCarthy coolly slotted home at the back post, strangely free from Bohs cover.

While the post-Caulfield City worked hard, they did not play much football, and were reliant on hard graft around the pitch. Even so, they grew in confidence as the game developed. Five minutes shy of the break Morrissey drove wide when in space.

 Daniel Mandroiu with Conor McCormack 

The Cork midfielder suffered a blow just shy of the break when hauled off injured, replaced by Pierce Phillips. That said, Conor McCormack was making some excellent tackles, recalling the quality he became renowned for when Cork's player of the season in 2017.

Tilley was impressive, flicking a left-footer over as half-time approached.

The Dubliners began the second half uneasy and Tilley capitalised on some sloppy passing to shoot at James Talbot, who batted out for a corner.

The Bohs crowd, so positive this season, was increasingly restless as the second half developed, Cork sitting deep and inviting pressure from the home side. Despite City not getting their rhythm going, they were quite comfortable. When they lost the ball, they defended with structure, and Bohs seemed to lack ideas.

Time running out, Talbot reacted by toggling with substitute Graham Cummins and may have been lucky to escape with a yellow card.

Bohs did fashion a chance 16 minutes into the second half as Danny Grant crossed but Kevin Devaney headed over.

Bohs' last chance came when Grant flashed a drive across goal, nobody waiting. Even four minutes of injury time made no difference and Cork celebrated like a team who had forgotten how to.

Bohemians: Talbot; Pender, Finnerty, Barker, Leahy; Grant, Buckley, Levingston, Mandroiu, Devaney; Corcoran.

Cork City: McNulty; McCarthy, McLoughlin, Casey, Comerford; McCormack, Morrissey (Phillips 44), O'Connor; Tilley, Sheppard, Rainsford (Cummins 58).

Referee: D McGrath.