A league team supreme against Drogs

November 8, 2018

Sligo Rovers A-League team faced a tough test at the Showgrounds on Saturday afternoon when they played third placed Drogheda United. Struggling Rovers have been bottom of the table for most of the season having only managed two wins in their opening nine games but they belied their lowly league position to record a deserved victory over the Boynesiders.

The first real chance in the game fell to David McDaid in the 15th minute when John Bellew played him through to go one on one with the Drogheda keeper but before McDaid could get the shot away, the Drogs defence caught up with him put in a crucial tackle to get the ball away. It didn’t take long for Rovers to take the lead though, just 6 minutes later McDaid again had the chance from close range and made no mistakes this time around.

In the 30th minute, Rovers were forced to make a substitution following a tackle on James Keaney which resulted in him having to be stretchered off with a suspected broken leg, Christopher Cleary replaced him. In the 44th minute, Bellew got a chance to extend Rovers lead with his shot but the post saved Drogheda this time.

After the half time interval, Drogheda started the brighter and in the 53rd minute got their equaliser following a mix up in the Sligo Rovers defence. Rovers were feeling the Drogheda United pressure now and five minutes later Drogheda themselves hit the post.

Rovers felt the need for a change in the 62nd minute and they introduced Shane Brannigan as a replacement for the goalscorer McDaid. It didn’t take long for Brannigan to make an impact as nine minutes later, he put Rovers back in front by firing past the Drogheda netminder.

The Bit O’Red began to dominate and made another change in the 76th minute when they brought on Gavin O’Dwyer for Ciaran Greene. In the 80th minute, Sligo Rovers ensured all three points when Christopher Cleary got away from his man and slotted the ball home. That wasn’t the end of the chances though as in the 88th minute, Oisin Mannion tried his luck when the Drogheda keeper had come out to clear his box, the ball fell luckily to Mannion who tried an adventurous lob but the keeper just got back to his goal in time to punch the ball over the bar and out for a Rovers corner.

Rovers were good value for their three points which sees them move on to 10 points in the league. Up next for them is an away trip to table toppers Bohemians at Dalymount Park next weekend.

Sligo Rovers: Stephen Heraghty, James Keaney(Christopher Cleary 30), Daniel Keohane, Jason Noctor, David Conwell, Emyln Mulligan, Mikey Creane, Oisin Mannion, John Bellew, David McDaid(Shane Brannigan 62), Ciaran Greene(Gavin O’Dwyer 76)

Subs not used: Michael Schlingerman

Group One’s other results:
Mervue United 1-2 Bohemians
Shamrock Rovers 4-3 Derry City
Finn Harps 1-0 Salthill Devon

Report by Michael Lynott