Keohane strikes late for Cork to sink Sligo Rovers
Cork City 1 Sligo Rovers 0
A late goal from sub Jimmy Keohane ensured Cork City made it five home wins from five at Turner’s Cross.
The Rebel Army had to wait until 12 minutes from time but Keohane, not long on the pitch, did the needful against his former club.
A very different game would have materialised had City’s Graham Cummins been able to send Colm Horgan’s cross to the net in the second minute, but Sligo goalkeeper Mitchell Beeney pulled off an outstanding save.
Cork – with John Caulfield in the stand as he served a one-game touchline ban, with assistant John Cotter in charge – did offer more of a threat for the rest of the half. However, they found the Sligo defence difficult to penetrate, with centre-back Patrick McClean making two vital blocks, first to deny Cummins in the 19th minute and then Seán McLoughlin as City forced four corners in a row coming up to half-time.
In between, the home side had a lot of the ball but lacked an end product, though Rovers didn’t look like causing them too much trouble at the other end.
Conor McCarthy headed wide from a McNamee corner and just before the break, another Cork opportunity saw Cummins get his head on a Shane Griffin cross but Beeney wasn’t overly stretched in having to keep his effort out.
Sligo had a chance on the resumption, Greg Moorhouse’s header saved by Mark McNulty but Cork had the better of the chances. The best came just after the hour, when Cummins and Kieran Sadlier linked on the left and Sadlier’s low ball found its way across to McNamee at the back post but he somehow shot wide.
There was a sense that that was their big opportunity, though they continued to press, with Kyle Callan-McFadden having to get on a good challenge to deny Cummins while David Cawley made a vital interception to prevent Sadlier getting a chance.
In between those, Cummins headed a Shane Griffin cross wide, but the goal finally came in the 78th minute. Keohane, brought on for Gearóid Morrissey three minutes beforehand, was in the right place when Colm Horgan’s cross from the right broke and the midfielder kept his cool to chest the ball down and send a low shot to the corner of Beeney’s net.
Another sub, Josh O’Hanlon, Cummins and McCarthy all went close to a second, while Sligo brought in Ally Roy, Raf Cretaro and Adam Morgan as they sought an equaliser. Morgan did have one late shot but McNulty was equal to it.
Cork City – McNulty; McCarthy, McLoughlin, Griffin; McCormack, Morrissey (Keohane 75); Sheppard (O’Hanlon 69), McNamee, Sadlier (Barry 85); Cummins.
Sligo Rovers – Beeney; Waters, Callan-McFadden, McClean, Donelon; Boylan (Cretaro 83), Keaney (Morgan 81), Cawley, McAleer (Roy 81); McCabe, Moorhouse.
Ref – D Tomney (Dublin)