Shelbourne 1 Longford Town 0

Shelbourne won the battle of the top two in the SSE Airtricity League first division by a goal to nil. Report by Kieran Burke

A converted penalty from Conan Byrne in the 79th minute giving them the share of the spoils in Tolka Park.

There was an electric atmosphere in the ground but the first half was as a cagey affair with Shelbourne dominating the opening passages before Longford Town eventually found their feet.

The home side should have been ahead early on when a brilliant ball from wide was met by the head of James English, who somehow hit the post from six yards, a major let off for Neale Fenn’s Longford.

Weathering something of a Shels storm, Longford Town nearly took the lead when a free flowing move resulted in an opening for Sam Verdon, who put his effort wide of the far post.

The game opened up in the second half as Longford Town created chance after chance but failed to take them.

The best of the opportunities was a one on one for Dean Byrne, his shot blazed over the bar from inside the area after a great run.

With the game entering the final ten minutes Longford Town substitute, Peter Hopkins gave away a controversial penalty for a high boot, converted by Conan Byrne to grant Ian Morris’s a crucial win.

Longford Town play their game in-hand on Monday evening against Galway FC in the City Calling Stadium.

Shelbourne: McCabe, Fitzgerald, Friel, Marku, O.Brennan, Farrell, R.Brennan, Rooney, English, Moore, Kilduff. Subs used: C.Byrne, D.McKenna and C.Noone.

Longford: Steacy, Elworthy, McDonnell, Kenna, Breslin, Dervin, O’Connor, Zambra, Byrne, Dobbs, Verdon. Subs used: Doyle, Hollywood & Hopkins