Sligo up for fight in Molde

Strikers Danny North and Raffaele Cretaro are set to return as Sligo Rovers go in search of goals in their Champions League qualifier this evening (kick-off 6pm).

The pair are in the Rovers squad that has travelled to Norway for their second leg tie against Ole Gunnar Solksjaer’s Molde, and both took a full part in training at the 11,800-capacity Aker Stadium last night.

Ian Baraclough’s side trail 1-0 from last week’s first-leg tie at the Showgrounds, and the Bit O’Red boss is confident that both North and Cretaro can play some part in tonight’s tie.

“Both have a chance of being involved, whether in the starting 11 or coming off the bench,” said Baraclough. “It was touch-and-go with both of them for last week’s game, but they weren’t quite right. But we are a week further down the line, and it gives us added choice and more options.”

Rovers are looking to become the first Irish team to win on Norwegian soil, and Baraclough is encouraging his side to grasp the opportunity.

“It would be a massive achievement to win here, but we want to create history every time we play. We want to push the boundaries as far as we can.

“We have a squad that want to go and win things. We have a good mixture of youth and experience. The younger players want to further their careers and want to play in the Champions League again and again.

“In order to do that, they have got to prove themselves all the time. It is exciting times for the club and for the players.”

Molde manager Solksjaer has no injury worries but is taking nothing for granted. “We were very pleased to get the win away but we know the tie is not over.”


The long-tailed tit’s nest is an architectural marvel.Richard Collins: Altruism of the long-tailed tits or not

The flight that brought us home to Ireland after our seven months sojourn in the Canary Islands (half our stay intended, half not) was the most comfortable I’ve experienced in years. With a large plane almost entirely to yourself, you could again pretend you were somebody.Damien Enright: Wonderful to see the green, green grass of home

IRISH folklore is replete with stories of priests praying for fine weather to help farmers save their crops in wet summers. However, the opposite could soon be happening when divine powers may have to be invoked to provide rain. And not just for farmers.Donal Hickey: Praying for rain — in Ireland

Geography is often the defining factor for the destiny of an island. Those islands that lie close to the shore have often been snapped up by interests on the mainland and their morphology changed to something completely different.The Islands of Ireland: Tarbert morphed onto the mainland

More From The Irish Examiner