A coolly taken Adam Foley goal on 38 minutes proved to be the match-winner as Finn Harps opened their season with a narrow win over Bohemians.

Foley took advantage of an undercooked James Finnerty backpass before rounding goalkeeper James Talbot to open his account for the campaign.

Bohemians had plenty of the ball, shaded the chances and would've been aggrieved at having not been awarded at least one second half penalty in Ballybofey.

The Dublin 7 outfit had a huge appeal for a spot kick turned down on 72 minutes when Ethan Boyle appeared to tug Ross Tierney, although referee Paul McLaughlin shook his head. Ryan Connolly later seemed to get away with one late on.

Chances were few and far between initially with the midfield battle well contested. It took 25 minutes for the home side to get a shot away with an optimistic Conor Barry effort on the turn not testing Talbot.

More comfortable in possession, Bohemians had the better of the play in the first quarter, with an uncomfortable moment for Mark Anthony McGinley in the Harps goal momentarily scrambling to see a slightly overcooked Liam Burt centre.

Ollie Horgan’s team had shown their resolute streak to survive last term by losing just once in their final eight outings and scored slightly against the run of play thanks to Foley’s opportunism.

The goal sparked the match into life, with Karl O’Sullivan moments later having a brief glimpse of goal only for Anto Breslin to clear. Shane McEleney shot slightly over as the Dalymount Park outfit struggled to clear a David Webster throw-in.

At the other end, Bohemians almost got a leveler when a Breslin ball into the penalty area eventually was smashed into the side netting by Rory Feely.

Keith Long’s side threatened more and more as the second half took shape and Georgie Kelly, a Donegal native, got in after Mark Coyle missed a header and McGinley saved with his feet.

Bohemians had Harps under serious pressure for long spells and away from the penalty appeals, squandered a great chance at the outset of injury time when Tierney couldn’t get enough purchase on a teasing ball in from substitute Keith Ward.

Finn Harps: Mark Anthony McGinley; Ethan Boyle, Shane McEleney, Kosovar Sadiki; Karl O’Sullivan (Ryan Shanley 56), Mark Coyle (Will Seymore 84), Ryan Connolly, Barry McNamee (Stephen Folan 84); Conor Barry (Mark Russell 55), Adam Foley (Sean Boyd 70).

Bohemians: James Talbot; James Finnerty, Rob Cornwall, Ciaran Kelly (Keith Ward 76); Rory Feely, Ali Coote (Thomas Oluwa 66), Keith Buckley, Anto Breslin; Ross Tierney, Liam Burt; Georgie Kelly.

Referee: Paul McLaughlin.


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