Women’s Preview: Rovers defeat Bohs in Cup 1/4 Final

Sligo Rovers produced a battling Women’s FAI Cup quarter-final performance for a sensational 1-0 victory against Bohemian FC at Dalymount Park this afternoon.

The all-important goal arrived in the 77th minute following a sustained period of Sligo Rovers pressure when Jodie Loughrey’s shot deflected to the net off Emma Hansberry.

The opportunity came after Emma Doherty’s initial effort following a corner was blocked by an under-pressure Bohemian FC rearguard and the ball bobbled around in the penalty area.

With only one all season, the Bit O’Red went into this encounter on the back of two defeats in the Women’s Premier Division and also having failed to beat the Dublin side twice this season.

However, on this occasion the skill and determination of the Sligo Rovers players was rewarded with a memorable victory and a place in the last four as they remain unbeaten in this season’s competition.

The warning signs were there for the hosts as the sides went in scoreless at the interval after the Bit O’Red mostly dominated the opening 45 minutes.

Emma Doherty flashed a header just wide of the target early on while Sarah Kiernan’s corner bounced off the Bohemian FC crossbar with Rachael Kelly scampering across the line.

Emma Hansberry was also denied an opportunity with a timely intervention by a home defender.

It wasn’t all one-way traffic and Sligo Rovers ‘keeper Bonnie McKiernan produced the save of the half with a flying save that denied Rachel Doyle.

Steve Feeney’s side started the second-half on the front foot with Hansberry, Boles and Doherty all going close before the hosts had a chance when Lynn Craven was narrowly off target from close range in the 59th minute.

Both sides continued to search for the opening goal and it was the Bit O’Red that looked more likely to score as the clock ticked.

Central to the victory was a solid defensive performance and Lauren Boles dictating a lot of the play.

The crucial goal duly arrived in the 77th minute when Loughrey’s shot deflected to the net off Hansberry.

The hosts had a chance soon after that was narrowly wide while at the other end Emma Doherty’s opportunist effort went the wrong side of the post.

Bohemian FC – Rachael Kelly; Lynn Craven, Katie Burdis, Lisa Murphy, Ciara Maher, Fiona Donnelly, Kira Bates-Crosbie, Rachel Doyle, Mia Dodd, Katie Lovely, Katie Malone. 

Subs – Anna Hegarty for Doyle 77 mins, Abbie O’Hara for Bates-Crosbie 84m.

Sligo Rovers – Bonnie McKiernan; Alice Lillie, Sarah Kiernan, Leah Kelly, Eimear Lafferty, Emma Hansberry, Lauren Boles, Keri Loughrey, Casey Howe, Jodie Loughrey, Emma Doherty.

Subs – Keeva Flynn for Lafferty 62 mins, Paula McGrory for K Loughrey 85m.