Team News: v Waterford Away

Sligo Rovers travel to Waterford as one of the Premier Division’s form teams as the Bit O’Red make the long journey to the RSC this Friday for the second time this season, kick off 7.45pm.

Following back-to-back wins over Shelbourne and Drogheda United and having picked up eight points from their last five games, Rovers travel to take on the Blues full of confidence and knowing victory would take them level on points with Keith Long’s side who currently occupy fourth spot.

Rovers will be without a number of players for Friday’s game. Nando Pijnaker, John Mahon and Simon Power are each continuing on their road to recovery. While Stefan Radosavljevic is part of the Faroe Islands squad who take on Estonia in the Baltics Cup semi-final on Saturday in Tallinn and will miss the game.

Conor Reynolds also misses out as he recovers from an injury picked up in that win over Shels while all players taking part in state exams will be unavailable. These include Daire Patton, Kyle McDonagh, David Jonathan and Aiden Gabbidon. 

Rovers have already picked up three points in the south east this year. Ellis Chapman netted the game’s only goal in a win for Sligo down at the RSC in May. While Waterford returned the favour at the Showgrounds in May, Christie Pattison scoring on that occasion. 

Looking ahead to the game, Rovers boss John Russell said: “We picked up two great results over the June Bank Holiday weekend. But those games are done now and although it gives us something to build on, we must focus on a difficult game at the RSC.

“Both sides have already beaten each other in the other club’s home ground so we’re expecting it to be a tight encounter once again as neither team really dominated in either game. 

“We’ll be without a handful of players due to injuries, international call-ups and exams. But that’s the way it goes and you’ve got to be able to deal with these things as they come along. 

“We wish our young players sitting exams the best of luck and we’ll see them back once they are finished.”