ALL THINGS IRELAND: SLIGO EDGE OUT SHELBOURNE IN FAI CUP ON PENALTIES
IRELAND BEAT NEW ZEALAND FOR THE 1ST TIME 40-29 IN HISTORIC WIN IN CHICAGO...

Monday, November 7, 2011

SLIGO EDGE OUT SHELBOURNE IN FAI CUP ON PENALTIES




Sligo Rovers did it the hard way to retain the FAI Cup at the Aviva Stadium against a spirited Shelbourne side.
With a crowd of over 21,000 at the revamped Lansdowne Road in glorious early-winter sunshine, newly-promoted Shelbourne, under Manager Alan Matthews took the lead in this frenetic Cup Final when Philly Hughes scored his 20th goal of the season to give the Dublin side the lead on the half-hour mark.

The pivotal moment of the came six minutes later when Shel's Barry Clancy was sent off for diving in the box by referee after having been previously booked for a foul on John Russell,
It was a very harsh decision in a cup-final to send a lad off when he was impeded in going towards goal.

That changed the nature of the Cup Final as Shelbourne was put on the defensive for the remainder of the game.

Sligo Rovers, under Manager Paul Cooke, failed to make the advantage count until Galwayman, Iarlaith Davoren scored a good goal in stopage-time at the end of the 1st half.

So it was 1-1 at half-time, tough on Shelbourne, who twarthed most of Sligo's attacks from midfield until Dean Delany had to save an Owen Doyle shot for Sligo on 53 mins.

However, Alan Matthews Shelbourne side heroically held out for penalties after full-time & extra-time was played out.

Paul Cook,the Liverpudlien Manager of Sligo Rovers brought on Ciaran Kelly to stand between the posts for the penalty shoot-out to try and retain the Cup for Sligo and it paid dividends as he again saved penalties from the Shelbourne team with Karl Bermingham scoring for Shels while Eoin Doyle, Richie Ryan and Alan Keane score. from the spot for Sligo to ensure they retained the FAI Cup for a second year after pushing Shamrock Rovers so close in the League all Season.

At least Shelbourne have the satisfaction of being promoted to the Premier League and maybe a chance at the Europa League next season.

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