Saturday, October 16, 2010

Sligo's Day

Yesterday was a day full of Sligo. Did I ever mention that I'm from Sligo? In the National Library 10 - 5 reading the Sligo Champion August to December 1913 on microfilm. Not just reading of course, researching. That means looking for and noting or photocopying what could be important for the book and ignoring all the other interesting bits - the court cases of assaults, neglect of children by mothers, neglect of wives by husbands, the beginnings of the setting up a medical system to deal with TB, the complaints of medical neglect, the sports reports.

The air is of waiting for the Home Rule Bill to make its slow way through the British Parliament and come into effect in 1914. A parliament for Ireland in Dublin at last! Poor things had no idea what was going to happen - the Great War, 1916 Rising, War of Independence, partition, the civil war.

Well, partition was in the air and the paper was full of the argument about Ulster. Sligo Protestants were vocal in their opposition to Home Rule and a lively debate was taking place about tolerance and intolerance in Sligo, Ulster and the rest of Ireland.

Then on to Dalymount Park for the FAI cup semi-final, Sligo Rovers against Bohs. We lost last year's final on a wet, windy cold November day in Tallaght. This year's final will be the first in the new Aviva stadium. We arrive early (of course) at the stadium and find Sligo supporters are being sent (I avoid the use of the word "herded") to the small stand behind the goal - that must be what Philip Greene used to call the Tramway End. There is an open stand on the other side but no-one is allowed in there.

Not the greatest place to watch a match from but the large group of Sligo supporters make the best of it and out-sing and out-chant the rivals. Especially when Sligo actually play the better football and seem more likely to score. We have a great view of two great first half saves by Bohs keeper.

In the second half most of the play is at the far end from us and we don't get a good view of the Sligo winning goal. A one-nil win for Sligo and off to the Aviva. How much will tickets cost? I got in for fifteen euro last night and could have got in for ten if I said I was an OAP. Pride and truth is more important than five euro though!

It was a very good match and the standard of football was high. The Irish Times website at the moment has the match report at 8th in its Soccer section - disgraceful! It leads with some tired story about buying and selling a foreign football club. The Irish Independent has it at number two in its Soccer section from which the photo above is taken of Gavin Peers scoring the winning goal.

The Sligo Champion of 1913 was also very critical of the Irish Times but for different reasons.

1 comment:

Peter Goulding said...

Delighted with the result last night, Michael, as I'm sure was every non-Bohs fan in the country.
Not sure about the atmosphere in a quarter full Aviva though!