Premier Division: Candystripes deny Sligo in Showgrounds stalemate

Derry keeper Peter Cherrie put in an impressive display in the league draw
Derry keeper Peter Cherrie put in an impressive display in the league draw

Derry City held firm to earn a goalless draw with Sligo Rovers in Saturday night's Premier Division encounter.

A dull first half of few chances at the Showgrounds was followed by a high-tempo second period.

Derry threatened first with Ed McGinty saving Ciaron Harkin's effort before the visitors managed to survive a series of Sligo openings.

David Cawley headed wide while City keeper Peter Cherrie denied Ronan Coughlan and John Mahon.

Derry came into the game with just one win in their last six league games while Sligo had gone five unbeaten.

A scrappy first was rarely brought to life by goalmouth action with City defender Eoin Toal heading over early from a Barry McNamee free-kick.

McNamee almost caught McGinty out as the keeper had to scramble back to tip the Derry captain's cross over the bar.

Ciaron Harkin missed out after going one-on-one with the Sligo keeper on Saturday night
Ciaron Harkin missed out after going one-on-one with the Sligo keeper

It had to improve on the restart and it didn't take long for the game's first clear opening to arrive.

Harkin seized on a poor backpass to go clear on goal but McGinty's stretched out a foot to deny the Candystripes midfielder.

Sligo took a grip on the game and Cawley should have done much better as he failed to find the target from a free header.

Cherrie kept out Coughlan's strike before Sligo claims for a penalty were turned down after McNamee's challenge on Cawley.

The pressure mounted but there was no way past Cherrie as he somehow pushed the ball clear when Mahon got the final touch to a cross.

It was a fine defensive display from Declan Devine's team, who stay fourth with Rovers six points back in seventh.

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