Match Report: Women’s v Shamrock Rovers



Sligo Rovers continue to seek their first Women’s Premier Division (WPD) win of the season following Saturday night’s reversal against Shamrock Rovers at the Showgrounds.

This was a contest that produced a contrasting performance in each half from the Bit O’Red, with a positive opening 45 minutes as Tommy Hewitt’s side hit the front midway through the half but conceded an equaliser in added time.

After the resumption, the Dublin women generally dictated and managed two well-taken goals that were sandwiched between their own goals, and that was sufficient to seal the victory.

The Sligo Rovers manager made a couple of changes from the previous week’s game against the DLR Waves, as Alice Lillie and Kelly Crompton came into the starting lineup with Katie Melly and Kelsey Monroe omitted.

The opening exchanges were played at a frantic pace with chances at each end, but the hosts required a couple of smart saves from Amber Hardy after 14 and 18 minutes to deny Aine O’Gorman and Stephanie Zambra.

However, the Dublin side conceded midway through the opening half when Sarah Kiernan climbed highest in the penalty area to direct a header past Summer Lawless.

Soon after, Jodie Loughrey won possession about 25 yards out and unleashed a fine effort that went narrowly over.

The Dublin women upped the tempo and pushed for an equaliser that eventually arrived in the second minute of added time when Joy Ralph powered a Stephanien Zambra cross to the net to leave it 1-1 at the interval.

The Dublin women maintained a high tempo after the resumption and forged ahead for 52 minutes through Aine O’Gorman. Further pressure yielded a third goal when a cross from the left took a deflection off of Sarah Kiernan for a 3-1 advantage.

The Bit O’Red once again lacked nothing in terms of effort but never looked like clawing back the deficit despite the efforts of Emma Doherty, Jodie, Keri Loughrey, and Muireann Devaney.

The fourth goal duly materialised in the 82nd minute when Joy Ralph added to her tally, and it took a superb save from Amber Hardy ahead of the final whistle to deny Aine O’Goirman her second goal of the game.

Sligo Rovers: Amber Hardy, Sarah Kiernan, Leah Kelly, Keeva Flynn, Alice Lillie, Eimear Lafferty, Kelly Crompton, Muireann Devaney, Keri Loughrey, Emma Doherty, and Jodie Loughrey. 

Subs: Paula McGrory for Kelly and Cara King for Crompton, both 60 minutes, and Anna McDaniel for Lafferty, 68 minutes.

Shamrock Rovers: Summer Lawless; Jessica Hennessy, Maria Reynolds, Aoife Kelly, Stephanie Zambra, Lia O’Leary, Aine O’Gorman, Joy Ralph, Scarlett Herron, Melissa O’Kane, and Katie O’Reilly. 

Subs: Shauna Fox for O’Reilly and Ella Kelly for Hennessy, both 75 minutes; Alannah Prizeman for O’Kane and Fiona Owens for O’Leary, both 86 minutes; Lauren Kelly for Ralph, 87 minutes.

Referee: Paudie Hayes.