Preview: Longford vs Rovers

 

Longford Town vs Sligo Rovers

SSE Airtricty League

Game 30

Saturday October 10th 7:30pm

City Calling Stadium

 

With four weeks to the end of the 2015 season Rovers play Longford Town in a game that will have a major bearing on the positions towards the bottom end of the table.

The Bit o'Red are trying to bounce back from a narrow loss to Galway United last Friday that gave a first league defeat in five games.

Longford are yet to beat Rovers this year with a 3-2 win the last time the teams played and a draw on the previous clash at City Calling Stadium.

 

 

Team news                              

Rovers: John Russell remains absent due to his hip injury with Jeff Henderson and Devaney along with Sander Puri who is on international duty.

Jason Hughes is fit again having missed out at Galway.

Longford Town: Stephen Rice misses out due to suspension.

 

 

Interview                                

Alan Rogers: “We have had a look at Longford and they are not a bad side. We just have to concentrate on ourselves and do our own thing and if we can do that hopefully the wins will come.

“The players have been handling the situation well. Training has been good again this week, there has been a good buzz and good banter at the sessions.”

 

 

 

Opposition                              

Longford are currently battling to ensure survival in the Premier Division in their first year back in the country's top league.

After a solid start they have found themselves struggling with just one win in the last eleven, that was a 1-0 home win against Bray Wanderers on August 29th.

They were knocked out of the FAI Cup at the semi-final stage last weekend to Dundalk with a 3-0 home loss to St. Pat's last time out in the league leaving them in 8th palce.

 

 

Head-to-head                        

 

 

Last visit                  

17/04/15   Longford Town 1 Sligo Rovers 1

Rovers were going in search of a second league win of the season following last week's win over Galway while Longford were looking to extend the gap between the two sides to six points.  
 
Morten Nielsen's shot from the edge of the area stung the gloves of Longford goalkeeper Paul Skinner on nine minutes. Nielsen, who was lively from the start, struck his fifteenth minute free over Skinner's crossbar after O'Connor handballed in front of his own area.
 
The game lit up on 40 minutes as the City Calling Stadium crowd were treated to two superb goals. Longford grabbed the lead courtesy of a stunning strike from Kevin O'Connor five minutes from the break. Stephen Rice teed up O'Connor with a quick free-kick and from 30 yards, the former Bray midfielder sending a wonderfully whipped strike into the top corner of Brush's net to give Tony Cousins' side the lead.
 

But whatever O'Connor could do, Cawley could match. Rovers levelled the game on the stroke of half-time following patient play from Alan Keane and Kevin Devaney. Keane did well to control an over cooked cross from Cretaro before supplying Devaney. And instead of attempting a cross into the area, the young winger opted to play the ball calmly back to Cawley in front of the area whose vicious goal-ward strike flew beyond the grasp of Skinner for his first goal of the season.

 
With 18 minutes remaining Nielsen's initial drive was deflected away by Sullivan before the ball bounced at the feet of substitute Danny Ledwith who forced a superb save from Skinner at full stretch. The Town net minder doing well to tip the ball over his crossbar.   
 
Cretaro was afforded a golden opportunity to put the away side into the lead with a quarter of an hour left. Ledwith picked out the Sligo winger from wide on the left but despite having the time and space, Cretaro was unable to guide his nodded effort goalwards.
 

Longford Town: Paul Skinner; Pat Flynn, William Tyrell, Pat Sullivan, Conor Powell; Ayman Ben Mohamed (for Lorcan Shannon 72), Kevin O'Connor, Stephen Rice, Mark Salmon, Gary Shaw; David O'Sullivan (for Kalem Simon 81).
Subs not used: Jamie Mulhall, Martin Deady, Rhys Gorman, Dan Henderson, Mark Rossiter.
 
Sligo Rovers: Richard Brush; Gary Boylan, Alan Keane, Stephen Folan, Jake Dykes; Raffaele Cretaro, John Russell, David Cawley, Kevin Devaney (for Sander Puri 85); Dinny Corcoran (for Danny Ledwith,67), Morten Nielsen.
Subs not used: Ryan Coulter, Keith Ward, Gary Armstrong, Eoin Wearen, Ciaran Kelly.

 

 

Match officials                        

Referee: Sean Grant

Assistant referees: Ciaran Delaney & Darren Carey

Fourth official: Ray Matthews

 

 

Coverage                                  

Commentary: Live radio updates on Ocean FM (oceanfm.ie)

Updates: Live updates on our Twitter account @sligorovers

 

 

 

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