Sunday 22 July 2018

Bray earn three points ... in front of 271 fans

Bray Wanderers 2 Sligo Rovers 1

Sligo coach Rodney Dalzell argues with the club’s supporters after their defeat against Bray Photo: Matt Browne/Sportsfile
Sligo coach Rodney Dalzell argues with the club’s supporters after their defeat against Bray Photo: Matt Browne/Sportsfile
Aidan Fitzmaurice

Aidan Fitzmaurice

Three points in a relegation battle, albeit in front of a paltry home crowd of 271 punters, made this a big day for Bray Wanderers.

However, Bray manager Martin Russell also admits that a meeting between the club and the players, scheduled for tomorrow, will have a huge bearing on how his side see out the season, if at all.

Kris Twardeck of Sligo Rovers in action against Sean Harding of Bray Wanderers. Photo: Matt Browne/Sportsfile
Kris Twardeck of Sligo Rovers in action against Sean Harding of Bray Wanderers. Photo: Matt Browne/Sportsfile

Cash-strapped Wanderers lost three key players last week as they were allowed find new clubs, and captain Gary McCabe didn't feature in the 2-1 win at home to Sligo Rovers as he's also due to move on.

Despite those player exits, and the fact that the squad didn't train all week, Bray looked sharper than a sub-par Sligo, taking the lead through Ger Pender on 16 minutes.

Adam Wixted headed home a Raff Cretaro cross to equalise for Sligo on 55 minutes, but another header, from Bray defender Sean Heaney in the 76th minute, earned Bray a win which puts them only six points behind Limerick.

Russell was pleased with his side's character, but knows that a meeting between officials and players on the club's financial future is key, with players keen to get their wages up to date.

Lewis Morrison of Sligo has his shot saved by goal keeper Evan Moran of Bray Wanderers. Photo: Matt Browne/Sportsfile
Lewis Morrison of Sligo has his shot saved by goal keeper Evan Moran of Bray Wanderers. Photo: Matt Browne/Sportsfile

"It was great character, it has been tough on everybody, everybody has been a victim of it," Russell said after the win.

"We have to try and make the best out of it, see what happens this week. The chairman came in and spoke honestly to the group the other day.

"He said he'd like to have things up to date by Tuesday of this week, he also made promises that if it doesn't (happen), more lads will be available to move," said Russell.

"Tuesday is the next time we are going to look at it. If things go well, we will be looking to bring in players too, the lads have been due monies to them and the chairman hopes to bring them up to date by Tuesday.

"Gary McCabe has offers, a few lads have offers and you could see lads going on Tuesday, but we'd like to think we'd be in a position to bring in fresh blood as well. We will see who we manage to keep, but we'll get to Tuesday first and see how the land lies then."

A section of the Sligo support, angry at a tame loss, engaged with some of the backroom staff after the game and boss Gerard Lyttle admits this was not good enough.

"A lot of players owe our fans an apology. We had a few coming down to support us and we have let them down, we have let the club down and we are massively disappointed," he said.

"Football is about passion and pride and I don't think we showed enough of that."

Irish Independent

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport