Shamrock Rovers will defend their FAI Cup crown at the Aviva Stadium on Sunday, December 6 after beating Sligo Rovers in the semi-final. Aaron McEneff scored a first-half brace to seal the victory for the Extra.ie FAI Cup holders who will be lookin
Dylan Watts' first goal in the Hoops’ colours and a routine finish by sub Gary Shaw gave Shamrock Rovers a hard-earned 2-0 win over Sligo Rovers on a dull warm evening at the Tallaght Stadium.
The breakthrough arrived on 66 minutes. Skipper Ronan Finn went marauding down the Shamrock Rovers left. Dan Carr missed the cross. Joel Coustrain reacted well to rescue the ball and drove across the area. Watts was quickest to react and the former Leicester and Bohs man poked a low right foot shot past a despairing Mitchell Beeney dive to put the seal on his Man of the Match performance.
Gary Shaw made the points safe with four minutes left as torrential rain hit the pitch. Mitchell Beeney made a fine save from an Aaron Bolger piledriver but was powerless to stop Shaw’s follow up shot on the rebound.
Sligo carved out the best chance of the opening half. Right-back Jack Keaney swept down the wing and delivered a slide rule pass across the box for David Cawley to drive a first time shot against Alan Mannus’ crossbar.
Shamrock Rovers bossed the first-half possession stakes but were restricted to a succession of speculative shots and half chances. But a powerful second-half showing ensured the revival and the run of clean sheets continues.
A battling performance by Sligo ultimately yielded no points, the westerners cause not helped by the 82nd minute dismissal on a second yellow of central defender Seamus Sharkey.