Rovers 0-0 Cork; Report
Micheál Schlingermann saved a second half Sean Maguire penalty as Sligo Rovers picked up a well deserved point against Cork City at the Showgrounds.
Schlingermann had brought down Karl Sheppard inside the Rovers penalty area ten minutes into the second half. But he made up for his error as he kept out the spot kick.
Kieran Sadlier was first to go close for Rovers. The Republic of Ireland youth international went close with a blistering free-kick from the edge of the Cork area on eight minutes. Jaanai Gordon, one of four Sligo changes from last week's defeat to Bray, was upended before Sadlier saw his hammered effort fly narrowly over Mark McNulty's crossbar.
Gordon's strength saw him shake off the attentions of City centre half Eoghan O'Connell five minutes later as Rovers showed their attacking intentions. But McNulty was on hand to block down the West Ham loanee's effort as the ball cannoned back off the Cork goalkeeper's chest.
It wasn't until the 25th minute that Schlingermann was properly tested. Stephen Dooley found space in front of the Sligo back four before unleashing a fine drilled effort which was pushed away by the Rovers number one.
Schlingermann had to be alert once more on 32 when Kevin O'Connor's burst of pace guided him past Sligo full-back Tobi Adebayo-Rowling. The Kiltimagh native pushing away O'Connor's speculative effort from out wide which looked to be heading inside the near post.
A wonderful piece of skill from Sadlier saw him easily skip past Colin Healy during the opening seconds of the second half. Sadlier's cross found the waiting Jimmy Keohane who could only crash his right-footed effort off Kenny Browne before Gordon's follow up suffered a similar fate.
Sadlier went close again on 48 when McNulty was forced to produce a strong had to tip over the 21-year-old's well hit volley from the angle.
John Caulfield's side knew that a win in the north west would see them back amongst the early season pace setters. Striker Maguire endured an underwhelming spell at the Showgrounds in 2014, netting just once in 18 outings for the Bit O'Red. The former Dundalk striker was offered a wonderful opportunity to send City into the ascendency on 55 when Schlingermann pulled down Karl Sheppard inside the area. Schlingermann atoned for his error however as he denied Maguire his fifth goal of the campaign, grabbing the spot-kick low down to his left.
It was then McNulty's turn to frustrate Sligo as Liam Martin found Keohane in space inside the Cork area on the hour mark. The midfielder then teed up Gordon whose first time effort was deflected away by the flailing legs of McNulty.
Sheppard looked odds on to put City into the lead on 69 when he sprung the offside trap, but a superb last ditch tackle from Regan Donelon was enough to take the ball off the toe of the former Everton youth.
Cork substitute Garry Buckley headed over from Steven Beattie's cross on 71, while Martin was next go close to breaking the deadlock five minutes later.
Sadlier and Craig Roddan combined down the Rovers left. The former's cross landed in the path of Martin whose first time volley squeezed past McNulty's far post with the goalkeeper all but beaten.
Cork finished the game the stronger. O'Connor's free from deep caused all sorts of panic inside the Rovers area in the first minute of added time at the end of the game. Schlingermann did well however to rush through a series of players and claim the ball under pressure. While the busy Sligo goalkeeper stood strong once more one minute later to get behind Garry Buckley's drive from 20 yards.
Sligo Rovers: Micheál Schlingermann; Tobi Adebayo-Rowling, Michael Leahy, Gary Boylan, Regan Donelon; Liam Martin, Jimmy Keohane, Craig Roddan, Jordan Richards (John Russell HT), Kieran Sadlier; Jaanai Gordon (Chris Lyons 60).
Cork City: Mark McNulty; John Dunleavy, Kenny Browne, Eoghan O'Connell, Kevin O'Connor; Gearoid Morrisey, Colin Healy (Garry Buckley 54), Stephen Dooley; Steven Beattie (Ian Turner 78), Karl Sheppard; Sean Maguire (Mark O'Sullivan 83).
Referee: Robert Harvey.