Sligo Rovers to host Falkirk Bairns in Scottish Challenge Cup

Thu, Aug 17 2017

Sligo boss Gerard Lyttle will be relieved his side won't have to face an away trip to Scotland. Credit: John Dingle


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Sligo Rovers will be the first League of Ireland side to host Irn Bru Cup football as they were drawn at home to Falkirk in the second round of the crossborder competition.


Bray Wanderers have been drawn away to Scottish League Two side Elgin City in what is essentially a lower league version of the Scottish League Cup minus the top-tier sides.


The FAI confirmed earlier this year that the two highest-placed League of Ireland sides would be invited to enter the competition formally known as the SPFL Challenge Cup.


Last year saw the expansion of the competition to include under-20s sides from the 12 Scottish Premiership clubs and two each from the Welsh Premier League and Danske Bank Premiership.


Gerard Lyttle's side are struggling in the league this season, sitting second from bottom, and may not welcome the distraction of a tie against the Scottish Championship side.


The Bit o' Red were the first name out of the drum in a draw conducted by Ireland legend Packie Bonner and actor Sanjeev Kuhli and broadcast live on Facebook.


By the terms of the draw, Bray were automatically handed an away tie, an unwelcome one for Harry Kenny's side as they'll have to organise transport to the rural town in northern Scotland.


Elsewhere in the draw, Northern Irish champions Linfield were drawn away to the winner of Spartans against Albion Rovers while Crusaders will host Motherwell under-20s.


All ties will be played on the weekend of September 2nd and 3rd. The originally scheduled meeting of Sligo and Bray for that weekend was moved forward to Tuesday as the sides drew 0-0.


The full second round draw can be seen here