Sligo Rovers were comfortable 3-0 winners over St Patrick’s Athletic last night at the Showgrounds as they marched into the semi-finals of the U-19 Enda McGuill Cup.
Sligo, joint-top of the Northern Elite Division and on a 8-game unbeaten run prior to kick-off, were the more assured side throughout the first half. They bossed the possession, without troubling the St Pats keeper for most of the half. A couple of half chances from Fintan Borotto and Jack Keaney was all they had to show for it until five minutes from the break.
A terrible defensive error allowed striker Gary Higgins in on goal, and he made no mistake to put the bit o’red in front.
Listen to St Patrick’s Athletic manager Garrett Dodrill’s after-match reaction here
It didn’t take long for Sligo to double their lead, as shortly after the break it was 2-0. Left-back Fintan Borotto got on the end of captain Paul Doyle’s free-kick to prod home.
Sligo’s third goal was a thing of pure beauty. They kept possession of the ball for almost 90 seconds, continuing to probe, and then Jack Keaney’s through-ball found his captain Paul Doyle who blasted the ball home. A goal to warm up the nice home crowd that turned up at the Showgrounds to watch.
A raft of substitutions followed, allowing St Pats to get some pressure on the home goal but the Sligo defence held firm.
Sligo Rover manager Brian Dorrian spoke to us after the game. Listen here
Some wonderful performances from Sligo’s John Mahon and Fintan Borotto in defence, Jack Keaney and Paul Doyle in midfield while Michael Place and Gary Higgins caused St Pats defenders problems all night.
However our man-of-the-match was the captain Paul Doyle. He was inspirational throughout, and capped a wonderful display with Sligo’s third goal.
Sligo now move into the semi-finals, along with UCD who defeated Cork City 4-2. A couple of outstanding quarter-finals still left to be played, with Drogheda hosting Dundalk and Bohemians against Cobh Ramblers.
Photo Credit: Sligo Rovers FC