League Preview: Sligo Rovers -v- Waterford

Thu, Mar 08 2018

Gavan Holohan pictured after Waterford's opening-day win over Derry City. Credit: Michael P Ryan

SLIGO ROVERS

Despite playing all their games at home this season, Sligo struggled in their opening three Premier Division games as they prepare to welcome Waterford to the Showgrounds (kick-off 7.45pm).

On the opening night of the season they were beaten by Limerick and the following week they defeated Derry City before Cork City hammered the Bit O’Red 4-1 in their last league game.

Manager Gerard Lyttle bemoaned the mistakes his side made in their last outing.

“We handed the game to Cork with the mistakes we made that night because you will always lose matches when you give teams like Cork goals on a plate,” he told the club’s website.

“It was planned to have a day off afterwards because we had played two games in three days, but with the way that game transpired, we cancelled that and decided to come in the next morning and review it together.

“We were able to have a full week of training since too which has been great. It’s obviously a very busy period coming up so to be able to work with the group over a decent period of time has been helpful.

“We did a double on Monday and an evening session on Tuesday to play some small sided games with the underage players as well to break things up and it was good. I don’t think it was a hard week on the players but it was a productive week.

“We showed in the second half that we can get at teams, we can create chances and obviously that’s what we want again. We sat off Cork a bit in the first half and played with pressure on us.

“I want the team to go out from the start and play with passion, freedom and go out and enjoy themselves and we simply didn’t do it.

“We want to start the game with an intensity on Friday and get the best out of ourselves because I think we can give every team in the league problems. There are signs of what we can do but we have to show it.”

Rhys McCabe will miss the visit of Waterford as he is suspended after being sent off late on during Sligo’s meeting with Cork City. Alistair Roy is doubtful with a bruised foot.

 

WATERFORD

Waterford have had a positive start to life in the Premier Division so far, winning two of their three games, losing only the champions Cork City.

Manager Alan Reynolds believes the trip to Sligo will be a difficult one for his side.

“It’s every Friday and Monday for the month of March starting with the trip to Sligo Rovers,” Reynolds told the club's website.

“I think that we’d prefer that then having to train like we have been so look we’ll prepare as best we can.

“I have spoken about one game at a time and that’s our aim. Sligo will be a very difficult game for us because they are a very good side.

“We have trained well this week after a few days off and we’re looking forward to the game.

“It’s going to be tough at the Showgrounds but I think that we go into the game with a confidence about ourselves and we have players that are just etching to get playing again after missing a couple of games.

“We played well against St Pat’s but anyone that knows me will know that there’s things from that game that we need to improve on. We were excellent at times but I’d like to see us do it for long periods in the game but it’s all about winning so hopefully we can do that.”

Dean O’Halloran and Faysel Kasmi are the only doubts heading into the game.

 

Referee: Neil Doyle

 

MATCH STATS

This will be Sligo Rovers fourth home game in a row after last Friday’s visit to St Patrick’s Athletic was postponed.

The sides last faced each other in an FAI Cup second round game in June 2013, as Sligo won 2-0 on their way to lifting the trophy. 

 

BETTING

Sligo Rovers 6/5; Draw 11/5; Waterford 6/5.

 

PREDICTION

Sligo Rovers 1-2 Waterford

 

Sligo Rovers

Injured: None.

Doubtful: Alistair Roy.

Suspended: Rhys McCabe.

 

Waterford

Injured: None.

Doubtful: Dean O’Halloran and Faysel Kasmi.

Suspended: None.