|Match Report||St Patrick's Athletic moved three points clear at the top of the Airtricity Premier Division table following victory over Drogheda United at Richmond Park.|
David McAllister opened the scoring for the Inchicore side on 22 minutes with a cracking drive and Derek Doyle scored the second from close range on 30 minutes.
The win moves Pat's three points clear of Shamrock Rovers but the Tallaght side can move back level on points with a win over Bohs on Sunday.
Drogs had beaten Pat's twice in the league and once in the Leinster Senior Cup already this season and started well as they went in search of another victory over the Dublin side but the home team soon stamped their mark on the game.
Shane Guthrie went close to putting Pat's in front on seven minutes. The big defender got on the end of Gareth O'Connor's corner from the right but put his header went inches wide of Robert Duggan's post.
Pat's took the lead on 22 minutes when Drogs failed to clear Doyle's ball into the box and McAllister blasted a superb drive into the top corner of Duggan's net from just inside the area.
Another O'Connor corner on 26 minutes was headed wide by Guthrie but on 30 minutes another dead ball from O'Connor set Doyle up to score.
The Drogs defence failed to clear O'Connor's deep in-swinging corner and in the ensuing scramble some Pat's players appeared to claim a touch had forced the ball over the line.
However, it was knocked out to Doyle on the left of the area and he made no mistake as he slotted in from close range.
It was nearly 3-0 on the stroke of half time when O'Connor's corner was headed on target by McAllister but Eoghan Osbourne was in the right place to head off the line.
James O'Brien went close on the hour to marking his Pat's debut with a goal but the former Birmingham City and Bradford City player was denied by but Duggan who saved his decent shot.
Drogs failed to threaten much but Kevin Ross had a shot on the break on 62 minutes but he rifled wide of Gary Rogers' goal while Duggan came to Drogs' rescue on 65 minutes when he saved Guthrie's header after an O'Connor cross.
McAllister had a chance to score his second goal of the night on 76 minutes but slammed his long-range effort high over the crossbar.
Doyle did much the same with a free kick on 82.
St Patrick's Athletic
Rogers; Pender, Lynch (Lynch h/t), Guthrie, Kenna; O'Brien (Mulcahy 72 mins), O'Connor, McAllister, Doyle; North, Byrne (Faherty 29 mins).
Duggan; Murphy, Hoey, Daly, Osbourne (Kierans 73 mins); McEnteggert, Ross, McMahon (Meenan 89 mins); Brennan: Fitzpatrick (Woods 72 mins), Flood.
Referee: D Tomney (Dub)