Athlone Town’s fine start to the SSE Airtricity League First Division season continued at Tolka Park last Friday as Eddie Wallace’s side earned an excellent 3-1 win.
Goals from Garbhan Coughlan, Eric Foley, and substitute Daniel Purdy ensured the Midlanders’ stretched their unbeaten run to four matches.
Coughlan and Philly Gorman went close for the visitors early on, while at the opposite end Athlone custodian Shane Cusack had to be alert when denying Philly Hughes.
But Athlone hit the front in the 20th minute when Coughlan ruthlessly punished a Shels defensive lapse in concentration.
Then two minutes later Foley fizzed a delightful long distance free kick to the back of the Shels net as Athlone were in control.
Town were dominant as a Philly Hand cross found Derek Doyle, who just couldn't get enough power on his header.
Shelbourne replacement Gareth Coughlan trimmed the deficit in the closing stages, but Athlone responded late on.
This time it was a splendid free-kick from Purdy, who sealed a hugely important win for the midlanders'.
Shelbourne: Murray; O’Connor, Robinson, Doyle, Osam; Donnelly (Sandford 25 ), Crowe (Coughlan 45 ); O’Sullivan ( Keegan 45 ), Walsh, Kehoe; Hughes.
Athlone Town: Cusack; Quigley (Gaul 60 ), Dunne, Collins, Hand; Chindea (Purdy 62 ), Foley, Boyne, Doyle; Gorman (Burke 83 ), Coughlan.