Report: WNL: Rovers 2-0 Cork City

Sligo Rovers kept a first clean sheet in the Women’s National League (WNL) today as early and late goals from Emma Doherty and Gemma McGuinness earned a 2-0 victory against Cork City at the Showgrounds, writes Conall Collier.

This was another solid display by the Bit O’Red with an impressive showing from the defence and goalkeeper Amy Mahon.

There was a dream start for Sligo Rovers with Emma Doherty heading the hosts into a first minute lead from a Gemma McGuinness cross.

Fiona Doherty had an excellent chance for a second goal two minutes later, but her well-struck shot was superbly saved by Maria O’Sullivan between the Cork posts.

Cork settled into the game and created a number of chances that posed problems for the Sligo Rovers rearguard without making any impact on the scoreboard.

After absorbing a period of pressure, Sligo Rovers created a good chance in the 20th minute when Gemma McGuinness almost got through, but a timely tackle by Cork City’s Orlaith Deasy averted the danger.

The Bit O’Red continued to press and McGuinness had a good chance, but was off target after Fiona and Emma Doherty combined to create the opening.

Cork then had a lucky escape in the 26th minute when an attempted clearance by defender Ciara McNamara hit her own post and was then cleared.

Cork City made three changes at half-time, but the hosts created the early chances with Fiona Doherty denied by a smart O’Sullivan save and then she hit over as the pressure was maintained on the Munster women.

It was midway through the half before Cork created a decent chance when a shot from Nathalie O’Brien was saved by Amy Mahon who handled confidently throughout.

At the other end Emma Doherty had a good chance saved and in a quick counter Cork City created an opening but Orna O’Dowd’s timely intervention averted the danger.

In the closing stages the hosts added a crucial second goal when Gemma McGuinness raced on to a Leah Kelly pass and finished past the advancing O’Sullivan to seal the victory.

Sligo Rovers – Amy Mahon; Leah Kelly, Orna O’Dowd, Amy Hyndman, Gemma McGuinness, Lauren Boles, Emma Doherty, Amy Roddy, Kerri O’Hara, Fiona Doherty, Paula McGrory. Subs – Jessica Casey for O’Hara half-time, Katie Melly for Fiona Doherty 70 mins, Aoife Brennan for McGrory and Lauren McLellan for E Doherty both 80 mins, Sarah Kiernan for McGuinness 85 mins.

Cork City – Maria O’Sullivan; Danielle Burke, Ciara McNamara, Zara Foley, Nadine Seward, Riona Crowley, Becky Cassin, Orlaith Deasy, Eva Mangan, Lauren Walsh, Lauren Singleton. Subs – Ellie O’Brien for Crowley, Shaunagh McCarthy for Singleton and Nathalie O’Brien for Walsh all half-time, Aoibhin Donnelly for Deasy 79 mins, Chloe Atkinson for Seward 85 mins.

Referee – Michael Connolly.

Assistant-referees – Darren Corcoran and Keenan Deering.

Fourth official – Declan Toland.