A season which promised so much for Bohemians is turning into something of a slog, the Gypsies’ hopes of European qualification via the league harmed by a loss at home to Waterford.
And it was three moments of class which won the points for the Blues, Tom Holland’s first goal for the club a thing of beauty, the finish coming after superb build-up play from Kevin Lynch and Michael O’Connor.
Bohs are of course still in the FAI Cup and will play Shamrock Rovers in the semi-final, if they can beat Crumlin United in Monday’s quarter-final.
But their league form has petered out, two wins from the last nine in the Premier Division as Derry City and St Patrick’s Athletic lurk right behind them in the race for third place.
Bohs could have been in front after only nine minutes, three chances in the space of a few seconds and those misses proved costly on 12 minutes when Waterford took the lead. Rory Feely got his head to Georgie Poynton’s corner and while keeper James Talbot got a touch it wasn’t enough to keep it out.
The goal gave Waterford an injection of confidence and they were dominant for a long spell. Bohs needed a last-gasp block from Rob Cornwall to prevent Zak Elbouzedi from scoring on 14 minutes and five minutes later Bohs escaped again, as a shot from English striker Walter Figueira came off the post.
Bohs weathered that storm and began to take a grip on things, Ryan Graydon unlucky not to score on 38 minutes as his shot was saved by keeper Connor.
Sub Danny Grant helped Bohs get back into the game with his first touch, his cross setting up Ross Tierney to level the scores on 57 minutes.
Bohs, yet to come from behind and win a league game this season, pressed hard for the lead goal, Dawson Devoy going close but with seven minutes left the away side came back for the winner, Lynch with a fine ball from the left back slot, O’Connor with a cheeky backheel and Holland’s superb finish.
Bohs were denied a penalty in added time after an apparent handball and Waterford held on.
BOHS – Talbot; Lyons, Cornwall, Finnerty, Pender; Tierney, Allardice; Graydon, Devoy, Wade-Slater (Grant 56); Wright.
WATERFORD – Connor; Feely, Browne (Duggan 46), Kougoun, Lynch; Bone, Holland; Fitzgerald (O’Connor 60), Poynton, Elbouzedi (Galvin 71); Figueira.
REF – Neil Doyle