Doubles from Cretaro and North secure Sligo Rovers victory

Raffaele Cretaro and Danny North both helped themselves to a double as Sligo Rovers ended Derry City’s reign as EA Sports Cup holders to ease themselves into the semi-finals with a convincing 4-0 win at the Showgrounds.

Raffaele Cretaro and Danny North both helped themselves to a double as Sligo Rovers ended Derry City’s reign as EA Sports Cup holders to ease themselves into the semi-finals with a convincing 4-0 win at the Showgrounds.

Having bossed much of the first half, Sligo, who won the competition in 2010, were in front within five minutes of the second half when David Cawley and North combined to put Cretaro in on goal to shoot past keeper Eugene Ferry.

North got his first on 78 minutes when shooting home the rebound after Ferry had parried his penalty. Derry defender Ryan McBride had been sent off for hauling down Cretaro to concede the spot kick.

Cretaro then sealed the win five minutes later when getting his second goal of the game from Lee Lynch’s pass. North added the fourth within a further two minutes.

Goalkeeper Reyaard Pieterse was the hero with two brilliant penalty saves in the necessary shootout as Shamrock Rovers advanced to the last four after a 1-1 draw after 120 minutes of football with St. Patrick's Athletic ended 1-1 at Richmond Park

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The South African saved penalties from both James Chambers and Ian Daly before Conor McCormack scored the crucial spot kick as Rovers won the shootout 4-2.

Gary McCabe, Stephen O’Donnell and Gary Twigg were Rovers' other penalty scorers while Aaron’s Greene effort was saved by Barry Murphy. Sean O’Connor and John Russell were successful from the spot for St. Pat’s.

A calamity of errors from St. Patrick’s central defender Aidan Price, making his first start of the season following injury, gifted Rovers the lead on six minutes.

Price initially played a free-kick straight to Rovers winger Killian Brennan before being booked for pulling down the Hoops winger. Brennan inflicted further punishment by scoring directly from a superbly struck free-kick.

St. Pat’s owned the ball, though, and eventually levelled on 27 minutes through O’Connor who was left unattended at the far post to head home right-back Pat Flynn exquisite delivery.

With few decent chances in the remainder of the 90 minutes, St. Pat’s dominated in extra-time with both Chris Forrester and Russell coming close.

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