Tag: sligo rovers

Supporters’ Club Notes (12/08/2018)

Sun Aug 12th 2018

CUP JOY

The weather in the north west wasn’t too good but beating Sligo Rovers in the FAI Cup yet again, certainly made up for the dismal Sligo wind and rain. We travelled up the N4 in great numbers more in hope than expectation. We managed to beat them last season, surely, this time they’d be out for sweet revenge on their home sod.

If our hosts thought they were in for a handy win, they hadn’t reckoned on a skilled, spirited performance from De Town. It was a real tough cup tie with Jamie Hollywood’s second half strike being enough for a sweet Town victory. In a game where all the players stood tall and proud, it was a hard task trying to pick any single player of the game. Mick Kelly brought off some excellent saves, Aodh Dervin ran himself ragged and Dylan McGlade tortured the opposition all night but it was a superb team performance. We had a bit of luck too but at the final whistle, many home fans were quick to acknowledge that we deserved to be in the pot for the next round. Indeed many home fans were loud in their disappointment at their own performance. They may have a much larger budget than us but money doesn’t always buy success. Once again, the travelling support was excellent even without the aid of a drum . Pity poor Kieran Burke who was about 36,000 ft in the clouds jetting homewards but we were happy to be on cloud 9. The romance of the Cup…there’s nothing quite like it.

[caption id="attachment_18790" align="aligncenter" width="1500"] Jamie Hollywood celebrates Town’s winner against the Bit O’Red (Picture by The Bit O’ Red Photography on Facebook)[/caption]

PERFECT PRESSIE

The FAI Cup win was the perfect birthday gift for one of the Town’s hardest working and most loyal supporters, Liam Healion. Due to a secrecy clause, we’re not allowed to reveal his age but a smiling Mags said he was like a 30 year old later on. Birthday wishes also to supporter Ben Hussey who celebrated his birthday, earlier in the week, with an official announcement on RTE radio.

MEL’S RETURN

It was great to see Mel Devlin back in the City Calling Stadium recently following a spell in hospital. Everyone was delighted the jovial Mel back and looking forward to seeing that smile again at our next home game.

GALWAY AWAY

We’re away to Galway United in a massive game this Friday, August 17th at 7.45pm. All of our remaining games are like cup finals; victory is vital, simple as that. If we can reproduce the display against Sligo, we should be fine. Anything less is no good. Once again, it looks like we’ll have a decent crowd making the journey west. Hopefully we’ll be smiling on the road home.



Match Report: Sligo Rovers 0-1 Longford Town (FAI Cup 1st Rnd)

Sun Aug 12th 2018

Match Report by James Donnelly

Irish Daily Mail FAI Cup First Round

Sligo Rovers FC 0-1 Longford Town FC

11/08/18, The Showgrounds, 7.45pm

Longford Town FC dumped Sligo Rovers out of the FAI Cup in the first round for the second successive year on Friday night as Jamie Hollywoods 65th minute goal was enough to seal the victory for the Red and Black at the Showgrounds.

On a wet and windy night, De Town got some bad news before the whistle was even blown, Shane Elworthy picking up a knock and having to be replaced in the starting eleven by Tristan Noack-Hofmann.

Longford had the opening chance of the game straight from tip-off. Gaining posession, Aodh Dervin (who had a terrific game in midfield) found Dylan McGlade who turned his man and shot from inside, forcing the early save from Beeney in the Sligo goal.

Sligo could have opened the scoring only moments later when David Cawley found himself free in the box but his speculative shot from the right side took a deflection and bounced narrowly wide of the Longford goal.

Town keeper Michael Kelly was yellow carded in the 12th minute after mistakenly picking the ball up outside his own box. The resulting free came to nothing in the end but he will want to forget about that one!

Neale Fenn was forced to make another unplanned early change when Sam Verdon had to go off with what looked like a nasty ankle injury. The challenge on Verdon warranted a yellow card to be produced and the recently returned Peter Hopkins came on in place. Verdon had been performing well up to that point, winning the ball in the air to lay if off to McGlade and Meenan on the wings. Longford will hope that the injury isn’t as serious as it looked as Verdon has played a key role in the hunt for promotion this season.

Rovers had a glorious opportunity to go 1-0 up on 32 minutes. A corner from McCabe was met in the air by Callan-McFadden but his header hit the cross bar and was cleared away from danger. A real let off for Longford but they can thank Michael Kelly who seemed to have gotten the slightest of touches to tip it on to the cross bar. One of many saves he would have to make throughout the night.

While Sligo pushed forward, Longford didn’t give them too much time on the ball and applied pressure. Peter Hopkins went close on 40 minutes when the ball broke on the halfway line to send him clear but he never fully connected with the ball and his shot drifted wide of Beeney’s post.

[caption id="attachment_18776" align="aligncenter" width="740"] Karl Chambers in action during last years FAI Cup win over Sligo Rovers at the City Calling Stadium.[/caption]

Longford had a shout for a penalty on 43 minutes, Jamie Hollywood on the end of a challenge just on the edge of the box. Town fans called for a peno but on inspection of the replay, it was evidently a yard or so outside the area. The resulting free from Daniel O’Reilly was straight into the hands of Beeney.

Going in 0-0 at half time, many Longford supporters were optimistic that the team could pull off another win, following on from last seasons cup win over Sligo at the City Calling Stadium.

Sligo started the second half with a purpose and could have taken the lead only a few minutes in when Mikey Drennan got free down the left hand side before turning in past Karl Chambers but his low flying shot rattled the bottom of the far post and bounced straight back into Kellys hands.

Dylan McGlade, who many were calling man of the match after another skillful display, had the opportunity to put Longford in the driving seat on 62 minutes. His long range effort stinging the hands of Beeney in goal who put it out for a corner.

Town supporters didn’t have to wait long for a goal to come though. Only 3 minutes later, McGlade once again produced a moment of magic when he rounded the Sligo defender on the touch line before playing it back to Jamie Hollywood who cooly slotted it into the far corner. Beeney should have done better but full credit to Longford, they kept up the pressure and it paid off.

From then on, Rovers began to mount attack after attack. Michael Kelly, who could have gotten a look in for man of the match also, was forced to save on a number of occasions for Longford and kept the side in it. Up the other end, McGlade went close again, shooting from the right side, his curled shot was palmed away by Beeney for a corner.

While Sligo tried and tried, Longford’s defence held firm. The Bit O’Red couldn’t break down the back 4 and it became evident when they resorted to long balls straight up the top in the last 10 minutes. Mikey Drennan had one last chance for Sligo after he raced through on goal but Michael Kelly was there again, this time denying him with a brilliant save using his foot.

Overall, a great night for Neale Fenn and Co, who will need all the positivity and momentum they can get going into Friday night’s game away against Galway United in the run in for a promotion playoff spot.

Sligo Rovers: Beeney, Twardek, Callan-McFadden, Mahon, McClean, Donelon, Cawley, McCabe (c), Lynch, Cretaro, Drennan

Subs: McGinty, Sharkey, Keaney (replaced Mahon), Wixted, McAleer (replaced Cretaro), Kerrigan, Morrison.

Longford Town: Kelly, Noack-Hofmann, O’Reilly, McDonnell, Chambers, Meenan, Zambra (c), Hollywood, Dervin, McGlade, Verdon.

Subs: Kelly, Hopkins (replaced Verdon), Ryan, O’Neill, O’Connor, Dillon, Temolo.

MATCH PREVIEW: Sligo Rovers v Longford Town (FAI Cup First Round)

Sat Aug 11th 2018

Match Preview by James Donnelly

Irish Daily Mail FAI Cup First Round
Sligo Rovers FC v Longford Town FC

Saturday 11th August 2018

The Showgrounds • 7.45PM

Sligo Rovers and Longford Town FC face off tonight in the first round of the FAI Cup. In a repeat of last years first round clash, Gerard Lyttle’s side will be hoping to gain revenge after they were sent crashing out of the tournament after extra time at the City Calling Stadium last time out.

Longford won 4-2 after extra time thanks to goals from Karl Chambers, Sam Verdon, Kealan Dillon and Peter Hopkins. Dillon has since moved on to pastures new but Chambers, Verdon and Hopkins are all available for selection.

Looking at both clubs current form, Sligo come into tonight’s game off the back of a 1-0 loss at home to Derry in the EA Sports Cup Semi-Final. Only a few days previously, they had made the trip up to the Brandywell for a league fixture and left with all 3 points. Sitting third from bottom in the Premier Division, the West Coast side have had struggled at times. Much like ourselves in the league, they have shown they can be a good footballing side at times but they have also shown they are vulnerable in areas. With that being said, Sligo boss Gerard Lyttle knows that they can’t underestimate Longford. Speaking to Sligo Rovers official website, he commented: “Longford turned us over last year and we know they are a good side. Neale has them playing a good brand of football, out from the back, and they’re up there challenging for the play-off spots. We know the dangers and I don’t think complacency will be an issue for us. I do feel we’re stronger this year and that’s no disrespect to any players here before. However, it’s up to us to go out and put the performance in. I think if we keep playing like we have been that we can win games and that’s the job for the lads on Saturday.”

[caption id="attachment_18759" align="aligncenter" width="645"] Sam Verdon celebrates scoring his goal along with Karl Chambers during last year’s Irish Daily Mail FAI Cup First Round win over Sligo Rovers at the City Calling Stadium last year.[/caption]

Sligo Rovers and Longford Town FC face off tonight in the first round of the FAI Cup. In a repeat of last years first round clash, Gerard Lyttle’s side will be hoping to gain revenge after they were sent crashing out of the tournament after extra time at the City Calling Stadium last time out.

Longford won 4-2 after extra time thanks to goals from Karl Chambers, Sam Verdon, Kealan Dillon and Peter Hopkins. Dillon has since moved on to pastures new but Chambers, Verdon and Hopkins are all available for selection.

Looking at both clubs current form, Sligo come into tonight’s game off the back of a 1-0 loss at home to Derry in the EA Sports Cup Semi-Final. Only a few days previously, they had made the trip up to the Brandywell for a league fixture and left with all 3 points. Sitting third from bottom in the Premier Division, the West Coast side have had struggled at times. Much like ourselves in the league, they have shown they can be a good footballing side at times but they have also shown they are vulnerable in areas. With that being said, Sligo boss Gerard Lyttle knows that they can’t underestimate Longford. Speaking to Sligo Rovers official website, he commented: “Longford turned us over last year and we know they are a good side. Neale has them playing a good brand of football, out from the back, and they’re up there challenging for the play-off spots. We know the dangers and I don’t think complacency will be an issue for us. I do feel we’re stronger this year and that’s no disrespect to any players here before. However, it’s up to us to go out and put the performance in. I think if we keep playing like we have been that we can win games and that’s the job for the lads on Saturday.”

Longford Town come into tonight’s game off the back of a comfortable 2-0 win over Athlone Town at the City Calling Stadium last week. While that game went off without a hitch, De Town’s last few weeks have been anything but easy. Losing 4 out of 6 in the month of July, Neale Fenn’s side have struggled to find consistent form in the second half of the season. While we are still very much in the mix for a promotion playoff spot, Longford will need to find the form they showed in beating league leaders UCD 5-1 earlier in the season. Speaking briefly to LTFC.ie, Neale Fenn said he feels Longford can win the game and won’t fear Sligo. Having beaten the home side last year and it being the cup, anything can happen.

In terms of team news for Longford, Jamie Doyle is suspended for the game while Dean Byrne is still on the injury list.

For Sligo, Gary Boylan is the only loss as he is still recovering from a long-term cruciate ligament injury.

Kick off at the Showgrounds tonight is 7.45pm.

Safe travels to all Longford supporters making the trip to Sligo.

#CmonDeTown!

LTFC.IE INTERVIEW WITH TRISTAN NOACK-HOFMANN

Fri Aug 10th 2018

INTERVIEW BY ANDREW DEMPSEY

Longford Town have an exciting Irish Daily Mail FAI Cup First Round tie against Sligo Rovers at the Showgrounds on Saturday evening at 7.45pm.

Last season saw an inspired Town dispose of their upcoming opponents Sligo by four goals to two at the City Calling Stadium as Neale Fenn’s young guns stunned Ger Lyttle’s Bit O’ Red with goals from Karl Chambers, Sam Verdon, Peter Hopkins and Kealan Dillon.

[caption id="attachment_18746" align="aligncenter" width="1368"] Longford Town defeated The Bit O’Red 4-2 after extra-time in last year’s FAI Cup.[/caption]

Ahead of the impending clash which has pitted the two N4 rivals together once again, local star and current first-team left back Tristan Noack-Hofmann spoke exclusively to LTFC.ie reporter Andrew Dempsey ahead of a salivating do-or-die cup clash against Sligo Rovers on Saturday evening.

Discussed in this interview was our season to date alongside the exciting times that only cup games bring to the table against the best teams the country has to offer.

Consolidating his place in the first-team this year with twenty league games under his belt thus far, Tristan has made the left back spot his own in recent seasons at the City Calling Stadium with many solid defensive displays of grit and determination.
Saying that, he has experienced many ups and downs already in his short career as a League of Ireland footballer, none more so than the recent defeat at Tolka Park.

Now 20, the impressive full-back noted that it was vitally important for the team to bounce back in the way they did against Athlone last week as Neale Fenn’s side look to find that all important momentum between now and the end of the season at the City Calling Stadium.

“It was a difficult weekend for us after the Shels game. At half time or even after an hour you would never have seen anything like that coming but it is what it is, and it was important that we bounced back against Athlone last week. We needed another win under our belts and we’ve a big cup game this weekend against Sligo. Confidence is so important because we have a young squad and thankfully we got a good win against Athlone!”

Lying on 38 points in the First Division league table in 5th place, just four points behind Drogheda United and Shelbourne in 3rd and 4th spot respectively, Town look primed for an end of season assault on the play-offs.

While the title is now mathematically out of reach at the Strokestown Road venue, Noack-Hofmann believes that it is of paramount importance for the team to keep getting points on the board between now and the end of the season as the Red and Black of the Midlands hunt down an elusive Playoff spot.

“In general, we’ve been quite consistent this year. Our levels of football and the way we play has stayed the same throughout. As a squad we’ve gelled together incredibly well. Fair enough the results might not always be the best or the points tally may not have been fair on us so far. Performances have been quite good this year apart from one or two results especially Finn Harps away. We just need to keep getting points on the board between now and the end of the season and who knows what will happen then!”

Comparing last year’s First Division to the latest instalment of it which has seen plenty of twists and turns thus far, the Longford/Cavan border native remarked that it is a far more enjoyable competition to play in this term, citing the unpredictability of results as the major reason as to why.

“It’s so much more enjoyable compared to last year! Every game means so much and you can go to every ground thinking you can get a win on the board. There’s no such weekend when you look at teams saying they’ll beat them or vice versa. As we’ve seen already it’s just so unpredictable. Cabinteely can go and beat UCD or Athlone could go off and take points off anyone. It’s just that kid of a year! You have to take each game as it comes and play to the best of your ability.”

With an improved buzz around Longford Town this year in terms of attendances and results, Tristan noted that he feels no different this year in terms of supporter expectations compared to his previous seasons in the Red and Black as both himself and close friend Aodh Dervin have played starring roles in Neale Fenn’s side.

“To be honest I don’t feel any different this year compared to other years playing for the club. Aodh and I are certainly enjoying our football. We’re both being allowed to express ourselves and that’s a great way to be. The club have been great to us so far and the fans have been so supportive of us when we get out there. They’ve taken us under their wings and have helped us along the way. Expectation is always good in a way but too much expectation is not good. I think we’ve had the perfect balance which has let us excel and allowed us to enjoy our football!”

With this week signalling the introduction of League of Ireland teams into the FAI Cup, the Longford Town FC academy graduate noted that he would love to be involved in another FAI Cup run akin to last year’s adventure in the storied cup competition.

“Cup runs are always great! As good as the First Division is this year, you always relish the feeling of going to big grounds in front big crowds against the best teams there are. You get a real buzz getting out onto the pitch when you’re in the middle of a cup run. You play against the best players and we’ll notice that against Sligo. They have an unbelievable squad and it’s a great experience when you get to play against players of that calibre. A cup run is so important for us lads to experience vibes of a higher league and the differences of playing at that elite level.”

With Manager and Assistant Manager Neale Fenn and Daire Doyle having plenty of fantastic experience in the FAI Cup during their playing careers, the 20-year-old defender noted that the experienced duo have passed on plenty of advice to the players ahead of the exciting cup clash against Sligo come 7.45pm on Saturday night.

“Neale and Daire have been very helpful in getting us ready for the game against Sligo on Saturday night. We know that we’re playing a very good Sligo team and we’ll stick to our own philosophy which has got us to where we are already. We’ve been good with that side of our game throughout this season with Neale and Daire, although we play different teams with different challenges, we’ve generally stuck to our philosophy which has helped us. I think it’s important that we stay to that because that’s how we play best!”

Remarkably, Town have quite an impressive record against Premier Division sides in the Cup competitions under the stewardship of Neale Fenn.  Only Cork City have got the better of De Town since Fenn’s arrival in late June 2017 as the 40-year-old Londoner has masterminded wins against the likes of Sligo Rovers and Shamrock Rovers previously in both the FAI and EA Sports Cups during the last twelve months.

An evident aspect of our new style of play, introduced by Neale Fenn, has been the ability for his side to test seasoned Premier Division clubs.

This sentiment was echoed by Tristan when he spoke about the Sligo game at the Showgrounds who believes the team plays better when they are given a crack at bigger teams on quality surfaces.

“The thing with us is we play better when we play good opposition on good pitches. When we play the likes of Cabinteely away on a rugby pitch or Athlone away we struggle to get our game going.  On pitches like the Showgrounds in Sligo we really enjoy it. We always put in our better performances when we go out and strut our stuff on better pitches because that’s the kind of team we are. Hopefully the Showgrounds will be in good nick like it always is and we’ll see what happens!”

And finally, Noack-Hofmann had this message for the supporters thanking them for the support they have given the team so far this season.

[caption id="attachment_18749" align="alignnone" width="2048"] Tristan was named last year’s LTFC Young Player of the Year.[/caption]

“The support for us has been immense so far this season. You really notice it when we play at the City Calling Stadium and other grounds throughout the country. When we come out from the dressing room, you get that extra 10% which is such a massive boost to ourselves. When we were at Tolka it was like we had a home game! It really gives you that extra push when you need it most and it’s really important to us!”



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