We had the pleasure of speaking to Sligo Rovers goalkeeper Michael Schlingermann during the week to ask him about his time at the club, and also to get his views on last week’s 1-1 draw with Derry City.
The Castlebar native re-joined the Bitored at the beginning of the 2016 season, after spending three seasons with Drogheda United, and quickly established himself as the Number 1 under Dave Robertson. He had previously made one appearance in 2009 in a 3-1 defeat to Bohemians.
We first asked him about the game against Derry, “I suppose the initial reaction was that of dissapointment because going into the game we knew a win would take us up a few places in the league table and secondly with the new manager in the stands a good first impression for him too.”
He said it was important to at least take something from the game, “In the end we didn’t lose the game but still think the three points were there for the taking. We started really well taking the lead in the first half but they got a fortunate equaliser in that a shot took a massive deflection off Kyle McFadden who threw his body on the line to make a block. The second half was really open and both sides played attractively to create lots of chances so i suppose both sides would feel they didn’t deserve to lose the game.”
Schlingermann feels the time is right to now step up and be a leader of this young team saying, “I feel I’ve established myself now as one of the best keepers in the league, and just want to become a leader within the team here now and hopefully have some success with the club.”
We asked him how things were going for him this season and he said, “Personally things are going okay at the minute. I came here as the number 1 at the start of last season and feel I’ve adapted well to full time football and have been happy with my own performances.”
“Unfortunately I picked up a serious ankle injury which ruled me out of the last six games in 2016. Then I picked up a bad sternum/collarbone injury before the first game this year. I played that game in Limerick which set me back a few weeks, but I’m back at full fitness now,. I now feel sharp and aim to do my bit to help the team climb the league table.”
He also spoke about the changes in the managerial structure at the club, “In relation to a new gaffer coming in, we are just delighted that something is now in place after being in limbo for the past few weeks. Declan (McIntyre) has done a great job in the interim, and it’ll now be a clean slate and fresh start for everyone at the club.”
“It goes without saying that we are all excited to get in to meet Gerard Lyttle and really kick-start our season, because we have some really talented players here and the best is yet to come from this group. Hopefully we might be able to strengthen again in the summer.”
Rovers, and Schlingermann face a trip east this weekend to face the keepers old club Drogheda United on Friday evening.