Posts Tagged ‘ Alan Matthews ’

LOI: Bray In Desperate Need Of A Good Friday

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Sligo Rovers –v- Bray Wanderers    5:45

Sligo Rovers host bottom side Bray Wanderers at the Showgrounds.

Sligo will be increasingly worried with how their season has started. Five games in and still no wins to their name, will have left quite a few worried. They have a perfect opportunity here to land their first three points of the season against a side in worse form than they are. For Owen Heary and his side, it’s an opportunity they can’t miss.

A nightmare start to the season just keeps getting worse as the weeks go by for Bray Wanderers. Five games, five defeats and no goals scored, it will take a huge effort for the Wicklow side to turn this around. Their opponents are in poor form themselves and Bray will hope to take advantage and land their first points of the season. It will be tough though given the week they have endured, with Alan Matthews and his backroom staff resigning en masse due to ongoing turmoil behind the scenes.

Prediction: Home win

Cork City –v- Derry City    7:45

North versus south here as Cork City play Derry City and Turner’s Cross.

A late goal from Kieran Djilali gave Cork City a 1-0 win against Bray Wanderers last week. That win keeps them in touching distance of Dundalk, whose early form could open a gap at the top Cork may struggle to close. John Caulfield will expect another three points from his side here and with home field advantage they may just get it.

A goal from Barry McNamee and a brace from Anthony Elding gave Derry City a 3-0 win over Drogheda United last week. Inconsistent form has left Derry in a mid-table and already eight points behind Dundalk. Peter Hutton and his side have their work cut out for them if they expect to mount a title challenge.

Prediction: Home win

Drogheda United –v- Bohemians    7:45

Bohemians travel to Louth to face Drogheda United at the Hunky Dory’s Stadium.

After a great start to the season with two wins in a row, Drogheda United have dropped eight points in their last three games, the latest of which came in a 3-0 defeat against Derry City. Johnny McDonnell and his side will be determined to get all three points here and put their season back on track.

Like their opponents Bohemians have dropped five points in their last two games. The 3-0 defeat against Dundalk will have been unsurprising, the 0-0 draw with Shamrock Rovers, disappointing. Bohemians will now be as determined as ever to get back to winning ways and climb as high up the table as they can.

Prediction: Away win

Shamrock Rovers –v- Galway United    8:00

Shamrock Rovers host Galway United at Tallaght Stadium.

Shamrock Rovers will be relatively pleased with their start to the season. Three wins and two draws keeps them well in contention for a title challenge, something the Rovers faithful have been crying out for. The Dublin side enter this game highly optimistic of gaining all three points and ensuring that Tallaght Stadium is a fortress for the rest of the season.

Galway will be less than pleased with their start to the season. One win and four defeats is not how they would have imagined life back in the top flight. They now know that they will have to work hard for every point they get and will have to be at their best, if they are to manage to get anything out of this game.

Prediction: Home win

Limerick –v- Dundalk    6:30

Limerick welcome league leaders Dundalk to Jackman Park.

After two successful campaigns in Ireland’s top flight, Limerick have thus far struggled this season. Two points are all they have to show for their opening five games. And given the quality of their opposition it will likely be two points from six games. Limerick are capable of getting results against bigger teams and will have to be at their best to get anything here.

The perfect start is an apt description for Dundalk’s opening five games. Five wins out of five, 11 goals scored and none conceded, the Louth side could not have hoped for a better start to their title defence. Stephen Kenny and his side would like to make it six wins from six and theirs nobody who would want to bet against them.

Prediction: Away win

Longford Town –v- St Patrick’s Athletic    7:30

St Patrick’s Athletic travel to the City Calling Stadium, to take on Longford Town.

Goals from Gary Shaw and Don Cowan gave Longford Town a 2-1 away win against Galway United last week, a win that puts them seventh. Tony Cousins will be extremely pleased with his sides start to the season. His side have not been daunted by promotion and have worked hard to earn what they have, sometime that could translate to survival come the end of the season.

A brace from Aaron Greene gave St Patrick’s Athletic a 2-0 away win over Limerick last week. That win was their second in a row and added a bit on consistency that was lacking in St Pat’s early season form. They enter this game hoping to make it three wins in a row and Liam Buckley and his side will do everything to make it happen.

Prediction: Draw

LOI: Big Dublin Derby Kicks Off New Season

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A new season is upon us as the eagerly awaited return of the League Of Ireland takes over the Irish sporting calendar for the weekend ahead. Each team starts the season off with a clean slate, fresh aspirations and hope of successful days ahead. While many are tipping Pat Fenlon’s Shamrock Rovers to lift this season’s title, recent years have shown us that the league title will be hotly contested, with a number of teams in contention for Airtricity League glory.

Dundalk –v- Longford Town    7:45

Champions Dundalk, take on newly promoted Longford Town at Oriel Park.

After their most successful season in 20 years resulted in them being crowned champions Dundalk will be most determined to start off their defence of the title by taking all three points. The Louth side will be hoping a good start equals a good season, but will be weary that their opponents will not let them have it all their own way. Continue reading

LOI: Cork Aim To Turn Up The Heat On Dundalk

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Athlone Town –v- Shamrock Rovers    7:45

Bottom side Athlone Town face Shamrock Rovers at the Athlone Town Stadium.

23 games in and Athlone Town must now be preparing for life in the first division next season. The 3-1 defeat away to Sligo Rovers last week was their 17th defeat this campaign. Athlone will now be playing for pride and hope this dreadful season can be forgotten before trying to earn promotion once again next season.

Pat Fenlon will be pleased with his start at Shamrock Rovers. His side managed a 2-0 home win over Derry City last week. The former Hibernian manager will now spend the rest of the season ensuring his team finish as high as they can, while assessing what’s needed for the Dublin side to really challenge for the league next season. Continue reading

LOI: Top Two Ready For Battle

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Bray Wanderers –v- Athlone Town    7:45

Two struggling sides face off as Bray Wanderers play Athlone Town at the Carlisle Grounds.

Another week, another defeat for Bray Wanderers. Their 5-1 defeat at the hands of Dundalk last week was their twelfth this season. More worrying is the manner of the defeat as Bray have conceded 13 goals in their last three games. Alan Matthews and his side need a win and quickly and will see this game as a perfect opportunity to get it.

The 2-0 defeat against St Patrick’s Athletic was Athlone Towns 16th this season. That defeat has left them rooted to the bottom of table and six points from safety. If Athlone are to have any chance of surviving they need to start beating the teams around them, so taking all three points here is an absolute must. Continue reading

LOI: Athlone Look To Surprise League Leaders

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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. Continue reading

LOI: Bohs Seek Dublin Bragging Rights On Enemy Ground

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Athlone Town –v- UCD    7:45

Bottom side Athlone Town welcome UCD to the Athlone Town Stadium.

The 2-0 defeat to Sligo Rovers on Tuesday was not unexpected, but would have been disheartening to Athlone Town after getting their first point in the previous game. They will consider this game an opportunity and will look to take advantage of their opponents inconsistent form and land that badly needed win.

UCD will be extremely pleased with their 1-1 draw with St Patrick’s Athletic last week. That result lifted them into ninth position and gave them some breathing room over the bottom sides. They will be looking for and expecting win here over a poor side, but need to be prepared and organised or they may leave the game with nothing. Continue reading

LOI: Chasing Pack Seek To Knock The Saints Off Top

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Cork City –v- Derry City 7:45

Title chasing Cork City host Derry City at Turner’s Cross.

The 3-2 defeat at the hands of St Patrick’s Athletic last week was a big disappointment for Cork City. By no means out of the title race, Cork are now chasing rather than leading. With six points dropped in their last two games and against title rivals, Cork will need a win here to gain back some of the momentum they lost. Lose and they many find themselves slipping down the table.

After the abrupt departure of Roddy Collins this week, Derry City were quick to replace him with club legend Peter Hutton. Hutton will be hoping that the renewed enthusiasm around the club will translate to results on the pitch. Derry face difficult opposition and will need every advantage they can get to attain the win they need.

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