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10-man Sligo earn valuable point as battle against relegation continues

Limerick were held by Ger Lyttle’s men at Markets Field.

Sligo Rover's Mick Leahy (file pic).
Sligo Rover's Mick Leahy (file pic).
Image: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Limerick 0

Sligo 0

TEN-MAN SLIGO hung on to claim a point in their fight against relegation at the Markets Field.

Benny Igiehon saw his strike ruled out for offside in what was the only real chance of the game.

Sligo Rovers went unchanged from their 1-1 draw with Drogheda United while Neil McDonald made a surprise omission in the shape of Robbie Williams. Seen as the de facto leader of the side, Williams was dropped, while Dean Clarke took up a right back berth to allow Norwich City loanee Joe Crowe partner Tony Whitehead in the centre of defence.

Ger Lyttle has focused on making Sligo more difficult to beat in recent times, and with Limerick adopting a similar ideology, it wasn’t a shock to see a lack of goalscoring opportunities in a first half that won’t live long in the memory of anyone in attendance.

Interestingly, the Bit O’ Red lined out with a centre half partnership of ex-Limerick players. Mick Leahy and Seamus Sharkey weren’t busy in the first forty-five, but the shrewd Gary Boylan ensured they had the protection they needed against Limerick’s front two.

The visitors’ best chance came midway through the half when Cretaro cleverly picked up possession in a central area. He fed Daniel Kearns down the left but he could only shoot into the side netting from a tight angle.

Neil McDonald gave his side ten minutes of the second half. He then introduced the lively pairing of John O’Flynn and Stephen Kenny. This changed the dynamic of the game. Limerick’s link-up between O’Flynn, Ogbene and Kenny was a huge improvement on their first half showing.

However, it was Sligo who would go closest soon after. Rafaelle Cretaro found space in the box and his shot was only palmed away by Clarke. Benny Igiehon converted at the back post but the linesman raised his flag for offside.

Cretaro saw red late on for a poor challenge on Chiedozie Ogbene, but Sligo hung on to grab a share of the points – however remain in the bottom three.

Limerick: Brendan Clarke; Dean Clarke, Tony Whitehead, Joe Crowe, David O’Connor; Henry Cameron (Bastien Hery, 77), Lee-J Lynch, Shane Duggan, Chiedozie Ogbene; Rodrigo Tosi (Stephen Kenny, 55), Garbhan Coughlan (John O’Flynn, 55).

Sligo: Micheal Schlingermann; Tobi Adebayo-Rowling, Seamus Sharkey, Michael Leahy, Regan Donelon; Gary Boylan, Rhys McCabe, John Russell (Jonah Ayunga, 77); Daniel Kearns (Craig Roddan, 90), Benny Igiehon (Mikey Place, 90), Raffaele Cretaro.

Referee: Paul McLaughlin (Monaghan).

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Andrew Cunneen

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