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LOI: Athlone Look To Surprise League Leaders

irishfootball

Bray Wanderers –v- Shamrock Rovers    7:45

Relegation battling Bray Wanderers play title chasing Shamrock Rovers at the Carlisle Grounds.

A 5-0 defeat against Derry City last week has seen Bray Wanderers dropping into the relegation zone. The Wicklow side will now look to move up the table as quickly as possible. They face a tough task here against a side with serious title aspirations, but manager Alan Matthews and his side will hope their home advantage will be enough to get the result they need.

Shamrock Rovers will be disappointed that they could not manage to get a result against league leaders Dundalk last week. The 1-0 defeat has left them in fourth place, six points from the top. Trevor Croly and his side know they must put a run of results together and build up some momentum if they wish catch up with the teams above them. A win here would be the perfect start.

Prediction: Away win

Cork City –v- UCD    8:05

Title challengers Cork City play host to UCD at Turner’s Cross.

A late Gary Buckley goal gave Cork City a 1-0 win over Drogheda United last week. That win puts Cork second on goal difference. A win here would see the leesiders go top of the league and for manager John Caulfield and his players, that is all the motivation they could ever need.

A goal from Samir Belhout gave UCD a badly needed three points in a 1-0 victory over Sligo Rovers last week. That result lifted the students out of the relegation zone and into tenth position. UCD will now look to add to that result, but given the form of their opponents and their poor away record, they will have to be at their best to get the result they need.

Prediction: Home win

Dundalk –v- Athlone Town    7:00

Top versus bottom here, as Dundalk face Athlone Town at Oriel Park.

A solitary Patrick Hoban goal gave Dundalk a hard earned victory over title rivals Shamrock Rovers last week. That win keeps Dundalk top of the league on goal difference. With the teams below them increasing the pressure the Louth side know they cannot afford to drop points and will need to be fully focused and at their best to get the points they need.

A goal from Kealan Dillon and a brace from Phillip Gorman gave Athlone Town all three points in a 3-0 win over Limerick last week. After their disastrous start Athlone are starting to pick up points, fully justifying the selection of Keith Long as manager. They face a tough ask here but will feel they can give Dundalk a really tough game, and perhaps pick up a point or three along the way.

Prediction: Home win

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

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