Rovers beaten in final home game of the year

Derry City require just a draw on Tuesday night against St Pat’s to confirm their European spot for 2020 after they beat Sligo Rovers at the Showgrounds.

Lewis Banks had handed Rovers the lead thirteen minutes in, but City recovered and levelled the game courtesy of Jamie McDonagh before an Ed McGinty mistake gifted Barry McNamee Derry’s second before half-time. 

The result means the Candystripes need just a point from the visit of the Saints next week, to secure continental football for next season.

Still chasing that third spot, City were on top in the opening half but fell behind to Banks’ first goal for the home side.

David Cawley latching on to Ronan Coughlan’s through ball, before Cawley pulled the ball back for the unmarked Banks to fire home.

Derry heads didn’t drop however and McDonagh struck the woodwork with a fine bending effort after skilfully pulling the ball past John Mahon. While Eoin Toal screwed his volley wide shortly before City had their leveller.

The ball falling to McDonagh at the edge of the area as the ex-Sligo man blasted a left footed volley past McGinty for his fourth of the season and his second against his former employers this year.

McGinty pulled off a fine stop from a close range McNamee effort on 36 minutes as Declan Devine’s charges pushed for the lead.

The Rovers net minder was at fault however six minutes later, when Derry had their second. McNamee guiding the beleaguered goalkeeper’s attempted clearance past McGinty at the first attempt.

Sligo’s Daryl Fordyce wasn’t too far away with an effort in added time at the end of the half. While the same man couldn’t get the power he needed behind his close range header when City failed to clear Cawley’s corner shortly after the re-start.

Regan Donelon almost profited from Kris Twardek’s over-cooked cross ten minutes into the second half as Rovers began the second half on the front foot. The full back’s first time volley at the far post sailing well beyond Peter Cherrie’s back post.

Both sides didn’t create much for a sustained period thereafter as this game suffered from a bout of end of season syndrome.

Grant Gillespie couldn’t find the far corner after he turned inside with 13 minutes of the second half remaining.

While McGinty managed to gather McDonagh’s corner at the second attempt, with Greg Sloggett in close proximity moments later.

Sligo Rovers: Ed McGinty; Danny Kane (Sam Warde 88), Kyle McFadden, John Mahon, Lewis Banks; Kris Twardek, David Cawley (Johnny Dunleavy 80), Daryl Fordyce, Niall Morahan, Regan Donelon (Brian Morley 84); Ronan Coughlan.

Derry City: Peter Cherrie; Grant Gillespie, Ally Gilchrist, Eoin Toal; Jamie McDonagh, Ciaran Coll; Barry McNamee (Michael McCrudden 92), Gregg Sloggett, Ciaron Harkin; David Parkhouse (Darren McCauley 89), Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe (Aidy Delap 94).

Referee: Paul Tuite.

Attendance: 1,909.