Preview: Rovers host Peamount on Saturday

Almost four months after Steve Feeney donned the manager’s bib and watched his Sligo Rovers side concede six goals against Peamount Utd in the Women’s National League, the Bit O’Red boss now has an opportunity to address that opening day reversal when the Dublin side visit the Showgrounds this Saturday.

Peamount subsequently lost the points after they were deemed to have fielded an ineligible player and that deduction could yet prove very costly as they bid to close the gap on runaway leaders Shelbourne.

The Bit O’Red take a three-game unbeaten run and three successive clean sheets into the game and manager Steve Feeney will be looking for another big performance from his side ahead of the mid-season break.

A cautious approach is now likely from Peamount after Sligo Rovers caused a major shock last weekend when they recorded a sensational 1-0 victory over high-flying Wexford Youths.

“Amy (Mahon) produced that brilliant penalty save against Wexford in added time, but the girls deserved that win for the effort they put into the game,” suggested the Sligo Rovers boss.

“It wasn’t just the penalty save, Amy made a number of top class saves throughout the game and she has been excellent since she come in for Kristen (Sample) who broke her arm in the game against Galway.

“The whole team was excellent, they were going as strong in the 90th minute as in the first, Wexford put us under a lot of early pressure, but we stood up to them and we stayed in the game, when you do that, you always have a chance,” he added.

Peamount manager James O’Callaghan has a link with the Showgrounds as he featured for Sligo Rovers during the final part of the Dermot Keeley-era back in the 1992 /’93 season.

“I went on loan to Sligo Rovers from Shelbourne, when Dermot (Keeley) was in charge, but then Willie McStay came in, I suppose I just missed the team that went on to win the FAI Cup the following season,” he commented about his link with the club.

However, he will have only one target on Saturday, to get three points and Peamount will have plenty of reasons for optimism on that front.

They hit Cork City for seven last weekend which was a real statement of intent as they bounced back after a few tough weeks.

Peamount controlled that game from the start and were in front from the 14th minute through Stephanie Roche while Áine O’Gorman got the second and Sadhbh Doyle grabbed a brace to make it 4-0 at the interval. O’Gorman added two more after the break and substitute Michelle Doonan made it 7-0 in the 79th minute.

That result will have hosts Sligo Rovers on high alert and they will aim to absorb the early Peamount pressure and stay in the game as long as possible according to manager Feeney.

“We didn’t manage to keep a clean sheet in the first series of games, now we have three and the obvious target is to try for four, but it will be a serious test against Peamount,” he commented.

“They hit seven last weekend, they hit six against us in what was our first game in the WNL, we want to give a better account of ourselves this time around.

“Peamount have very good players, but we have improved from that opening game last March, we will find out how much improvement after 90 minutes, hopefully we can get something out of the game,” he added.

With no men’s fixture this week, we encourage all Bit O’ Red supporters to attend the game and support the team.

Gates open at 1pm with adult admission at just €5.