Sligo target win in top-of-table clash
Sligo Rovers under manager Ian Baraclough are back in form on the back of two straight league wins. Photograph: Inpho/Donall Farmer
Sligo Rovers manager Ian Baraclough acknowledges there is no getting away from the magnitude of tonight’s clash with Dundalk at Oriel Park.
With his champions back in form on the back of two straight league wins, Baraclough insists that, despite their injury concerns and Tuesday’s EA Sports Cup semi-final loss at Shamrock Rovers, they travel in the right frame of mind to take on a Dundalk team that continues to surprise.
“It’s second against third in the table and a huge match at this stage of the season,” said Baraclough. “Both teams will look at it as one they feel that if they can get a victory, it can be a major lift for the run-in. St Pat’s and other teams in the mix will be rubbing their hands at the prospect of whatever result occurs.”
Sligo’s hopes are hampered by injuries depriving them of defenders Iarfhlaith Davoren, Ross Gaynor and striker David McMillan while their central defensive partnership of Evan McMillan and Gavin Peers, along with Raffaele Cretaro and striker Danny North, will need to prove their fitness.
Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny is delighted with his side’s momentum which has enabled them win eight of the last ten games in the league.
“There’s a great feeling around the club . . . Everyone is enjoying it,” said Kenny who is without injured winger Keith Ward. Striker Tiarnan Mulvenna is suspended while John Mountney is doubtful.
St Patrick’s Athletic, a point clear of Dundalk at the top, welcome Killian Brennan back, though John Russell is banned, as they host struggling Shelbourne.
Last week’s home defeat to Dundalk ended a five-match unbeaten run for Shelbourne who travel across the city without suspended defender Pat Flynn while Paul Crowley, Robert Bayly, Mark Leech and Jack Memery are injured.
Shamrock Rovers go to Bohemians in a second Dublin derby tonight without the suspended Derek Foran, Jason McGuinness, Stephen Rice and Sean O’Connor. Goalkeeper Richard Brush and winger Billy Dennehy are injured. Mark Quigley (calf) is once again a doubt, though Eamon Zayed has returned from international duty with Libya.
Suspension deprives bottom-of-the-table Bohemians of Karl Moore, while left-back Ciaran Nangle is out injured.