A SPECTACULAR Michael Duffy strike sent Dundalk through to the second round of the Europa League qualifying stages at the expense of Estonia’s Levadia Tallin.
Stephen Kenny’s side had secured a priceless 1-0 victory away in the first leg and put the game beyond reach just after the half hour mark at Oriel Park
Patrick Hoban opened the scoring for the hosts on 31 minutes, getting on the end of Sean Gannon's cross to head past Sergei Lepmets before Duffy’s effort -described by Kenny as ‘Van Basten esque’ - pushed the score to 3-0 on aggregate and effectively killed the tie as a contest.
“Michael Duffy's goal was really a bit special, goal of the season probably," Kenny told RTE.
Pick that out! What a goal from Michael Duffy. @DundalkFC lead Levadia Tallinn 2-1 at Oriel Park (3-1 on aggregate) and you'll do very well to find a better finish anywhere in Europe tonight than this peach of a volley #RTEsoccer pic.twitter.com/ArDW8MxkAt
— RTÉ Sport (@RTEsport) July 19, 2018
"It is a Marco van Basten-esque strike on his weaker foot. He's right-footed and he hit it with his left foot coming at an incredible angle on the volley into the top corner. The technique was amazing and something you see very rarely.
"We'd a lot of good performances tonight. Michael was one. Probably the best player on he park for us tonight was Chris Shields. He doesn't always get the plaudits he's actually playing the best football of his career in my view.”
Roman Debelko grabbed a goal just before half time for the visitors to put some gloss on the scoreline, but it is the Lilywhites who progress to the second round, where they will meet AEK Larnaca on July 26.