Derry's Nathan Boyle and Niclas Vemmelund of Dundalk in action during tonight's FAI Cup tie at Oriel Park. (Pic: Ciarán Culligan)
Dundalk FC 4-0 Derry City
A brace from John Mountney, David McMillan's penalty and Michael Duffy's late strike ensured Dundalk knocked Derry City out of the FAI Cup for the second successive season at Oriel Park this evening.
The game was only 43 seconds old when the Lilywhites went ahead through Mountney, who deflected Seán Gannon's pinpoint right-wing cross past Ger Doherty from four-yards.
Derry manager Kenny Shiels cut a furious figure in the goal's aftermath and understandably so as his defence were caught woefully out of place with Gannon having been afforded time and space to receive and deliver Patrick McEleney's crossfield pass.
With Stephen Kenny having fielded what looked to be his strongest XI - with Stephen O'Donnell and Robbie Benson in midfield - Dundalk began at a ferocious tempo, though the visitors were competitive in a keenly contested opening.
The hosts always looked the likelier to score with Duffy shooting off-target on five occasions during the first-half along with firing another against the crossbar.
Patrick McEleney and Duffy were impressing in tandem, but for all their dominance and entertaining play, having not converted a second major, Derry almost leveled in the closing moments of the first-half when Aaron McEneff shot against the bar before Gary Rogers was forced to turn behind Lukas Schubert's follow-up attempt.
Trailing by Mountney's first goal of the season at half-time, Derry, and Dean Jarvis, pressed firmly on the self-destruct button early in the second-period as the defender needlessly dragged McMillan back as he chased Brian Gartland's flicked header.
The result was a penalty, which McMillan scored, with the Foylesiders' cup hopes all but dashed in the process. To their credit, Derry battled to the close with Niclas Vemmelund denying Schubert before Ronan Curtis' goalbound attempt was somehow cleared off the line by Dane Massey.
Robbie Benson wasted a clear sight of goal at the other end after more impressive play by the livewire on the wing, Duffy, prior to Mountney converting the goal of the night with 10 minutes to play.
A turnover saw the ball land at the feet of the Mayo man, who shot a bullet to the bottom left-hand corner from 30 yards, before man of the match Duffy put gloss on the scoreboard as the game entered added time.
Dundalk: Gary Rogers; Seán Gannon, Brian Gartland, Niclas Vemmelund, Dane Massey; Stephen O’Donnell (Jamie McGrath 85), Robbie Benson; John Mountney, Patrick McEleney (Chris Shields 75), Michael Duffy; David McMillan (Thomas Stewart 76)
Subs not used: Gabriel Sava (gk), Seán Hoare, Shane Grimes, Dylan Connolly
Booked: O'Donnell (43), Benson (86)
Derry City: Ger Doherty; Lucas Schubert, Darren Cole, Aaron Barry, Dean Jarvis; Nicky Low, Barry McNamee; Nathan Boyle (Jozef Dolny 58), Aaron McEneff, Ronan Curtis (Ben Doherty 69); Rory Patterson
Subs not used: Eric Grimes (gk), Rory Holden, Micky Place, Jamie McIntyre, Eoin Toal
Booked: Curtis (54), Barry (70)
Referee: Neil Doyle (Dublin)