In what was a game of two halves, it was Sligo Rovers who came out victorious in this SSE Airtricity League Premier Division game between Sligo Rovers and Longford Town. In a pulsating encounter Longford Manager Tony Cousins will feel his charges should have cone away from the Showgrounds with at least a point.
It was Longford who settled the quicker of the two teams and had the first opportunity of the game after two minutes when Kevin O Connor had a shot which just went over the bar after poor defending from the Bit O'Red.
This early scare sparked Rovers to life. After just five minutes of the encounter Dinny Corcoran intercepted a pass from Raffaele Cretaro which forced Longford goalkeeper Paul Skinner to the edge of his box to gather the ball in.
Rovers continued to push and were rewarded after twenty one minutes when captain David Cawley turned stand in right back Raffaele Cretaros ball into the back of the net.
Two minutes later and it was two nil to Rovers after Keith Ward scooped the ball over Paul Skinner's head after cheekily dinking the ball on from the left hand side of the pitch.
Shortly after the half hour mark it was three nil to Rovers after top scorer Dinny Corcoran scored from a pass from Sander Puri. As the match approached half time man of the match Gary Armstrong shot just wide from A Sander Puri pass.
Dinny Corcoran then tried his luck from a Keith Ward pass which went just wide of the post.
Longford manager Tony Cousins brought on new signing Dean Kelly just after half time to try and get his team back into the match and not long after his shot went just wide of the Rovers post.
Keith Ward tried an audacious attempt a few moments later when he flicked on a fourty yard free kick which had Longford keeper Paul Skinner scrambling to save.
It was at this stage where Longford came into their own and were rewarded with a penalty when Keith Ward brought Mark Salmon down in the box and he slotted the penalty away easily.
Longford began to asseriate themselves more on the game and this pressure was rewarded on seventy seven minutes when debutant Dean Kelly scored his first for Longford turning in Mark Salmon pass.
Ten minutes before the end Gary Shaw forced a magnificent save from Ryan Coulter to keep the Bit O'Red ahead.
As the game finished in a flurry it was Rovers who kept their nerve to move ahead of Derry City out of the fly off place while Longford remain in sixth.
Sligo Rovers: Ryan Coulter, Raffaele Cretaro, Gavin Peers, Alan Keane, Regan Donelan, Sander Puri, David Cawley (C), Gary Boylan, Keith Ward (Kevin Devaney 69), Gary Armstrong (Liam Flatley 84), Dinny Corcoran
Subs Not Used: Ciaran Kelly, Jake Dykes, Ross Taheny, Ryan Mc Manus.
Longford Town: Paul Skinner, Conor Powell, Mark Rossiter (Jamie Muthill 88), Pat Sullivan, Stephen Rice, Mark Salmon (C), Jack Doherty (Ayman Ben Mohamed 65), Rhys Gorman, Kevin O Connor, Gary Shaw, David O Sullivan (Dean Kelly 46).
Subs Not Used: Martin Deady, William Tyrell, Kaleem Simon, Paul Hunt.
Extratime.ie Man of the Match: Gary Armstrong (Sligo Rovers)