Cork City 0, Sligo Rovers 1
Champions-elect Cork City suffered their second home league defeat in-a-row when relegation threatened Sligo Rovers won at Turner’s Cross tonight, writes Noel Spillane.
The match winner arrived on 49 minutes when Welsh U21 international Rhys McCabe scored from the touchline as his left-footed effort carried into the net over Mark McNulty’s head at the Shed-end as the Bit O’Red ended the game with ten men when midfielder Craig Roddan received a second yellow card in added time.
Cork made two changes with skipper Alan Bennett and Jimmy Keohane coming in for Robbie Williams who has a calf strain and Steven Beattie who dropped to the bench.
Keohane played in an unfamiliar role as an out-and-out striker in a 4-2-3-1 formation.
Sligo boss Gerard Lyttle made four changes from the side that drew 0-0 with Bray Wanderers earlier in the week with Vinny Faherty, Raffaele Cretaro, Chris Kenny and Jamie McDonagh all recalled to the starting eleven.
Sligo, yet to register an away win, and the league’s draw specialists took the game to Cork in the opening half and had goal chances via Vinny Faherty, Raffaele Creataro and a Rhys McCabe free kick.
Cork’s response saw Kieran Sadlier go close twice and one of his efforts hit the side-netting and then just before half-time Jimmy Keohane played in Karl Sheppard but he dragged his low shot just outside the far post at the St. Anne’s end.
Sligo drew their last five games but their performance belied their lowly league position and they proved the point with a lead goal on 49 minutes.
Man of the match McCabe netted with a left-footed drive that went in over McNulty’s head after Cretaro’s lay-off set up the chance but Sligo had Craig Roddan sent off in added time.
CORK CITY: (4-2-3-1) McNulty; McCormack (Beattie 60), Bennett (capt), Delaney, Griffin; Bolger (Ellis 60), Morrissey; Sheppard, Buckley, Sadlier; Keohane.
Subs. Campion, McCarthy, Williams, Phillips & Smith (not used)
SLIGO ROVERS: (4-1-3-1) Schlingermann; Adebayo-Rowling, McFadden, Sharkey, Donelon; Roddan, Kenny; McCabe, Creatro (Boylan 85), McDonagh (Moorehouse 90); Faherty (Igiehon 75).
Subs. Leahy, Haughton, Russell & Patton (not used)
Referee: Ray Matthews (Longford)