Here we preview all the Premier Division fixtures taking place around the country tonight.
Another set of midweek games beckons with the league table making for an altogether different picture following some unexpected results on Friday night.
A fiery game in Tallaght Stadium defines the weekend’s action, with Dundalk having coughed up a two-goal lead away to one of their title rivals Shamrock Rovers.
Elsewhere Cork City took advantage of the Lilywhites’ result by beating Drogheda United 2-1 away from home.
Bohemians’ narrow 1-0 loss at home to St. Patrick’s Athletic, which means the Saints now move to fifth, has opened up things nicely for John Caulfield’s Cork City, who will know a win over Longford tonight sets up a massive clash at the top again next Friday, as the Lilywhites head to Turner’s Cross.
Limerick still remain the only side without a win to their name after eight games, having lost a six-pointer away to Galway, keeping them firmly at the foot of the table.
Sligo picked up a point away to Longford, which shows some slow signs of progress at the Showgrounds now, having gone unbeaten for two games in a row for the first time this season.
After just a couple of days rest we head straight back into action again tonight with a full round of fixtures, all kicking-0ff at 7:45pm.
Bray Wanderers vs Shamrock Rovers (kick-off 7:45pm)
Bray’s recent rise in form was halted on Friday by a stubborn Derry defence at the Brandywell.
The Hoops also drew at the weekend, but the circumstances with which they did so will hand Rovers a massive psychological edge as they travel to the seaside.
A Michael Drennan double gave Rovers a 2-2 draw against the champions following Lilywhite goalkeeper Gary Rogers’ sending off.
Bray’s revival was slowed away to Derry, but it will be halted completely with the visit of Shamrock Rovers.
Bray Wanderers 0-2 Shamrock Rovers
Cork City vs Longford Town (kick-off 7:45pm)
Buoyed by a 2-1 away win in Drogheda, combined with knowing a victory tonight will give them a chance of going top on Friday, when they face Dundalk, Cork City will be well aware of the importance this game holds.
Longford will not relish travelling to Cork midweek but their ability to frustrate their opposition has been evident this season with just three losses so far.
Such is the gravity of this match, the quality of the Leesiders’ squad and the great home form of Cork City, everything points to a home win in Turner’s Cross.
Cork City 3-0 Longford Town
Dundalk vs Galway United (kick-off 7:45pm)
Probably the dead cert of this round of fixtures is Dundalk at home to lowly Galway United. The Tribesmen however, are coming off the back of their second victory of the season over Limerick last Friday.
The confidence this win has brought Galway will be of little effect against a side such as Dundalk, who will be looking to reassert their position as top dogs. A win over the Galwegians shouldn’t be the toughest of tasks for a team as talented as Stephen Kenny’s.
Gary Rogers will now likely be suspended for his red card and this offers a possible weak point for Galway to focus on. That is dependent on Dundalk giving them any space to attack in the first place however.
Dundalk 2-0 Galway United
Limerick vs Derry City (kick-off 7:45pm)
Limerick continue their quest for a first win of the season by welcoming Derry City to Jackman Park tonight. Derry will be travelling to Limerick confident they can pull something off having kept two clean sheets in their last two games.
It is now time for Anthony Elding and co. to step up to the plate however, and give the Candystripes a chance of shooting up the table, with some goals.
Limerick desperately need a win but against a defence which is holding out as well as Derry’s at the moment may be a bridge to far for the Shannonsiders.
Limerick 1-1 Derry City
Sligo Rovers vs Bohemians (kick-off 7:45pm)
Bohemians’ loss to St. Pat’s on Friday means they are now just two points above their south Dublin rivals and have fallen into fourth.
Sligo are starting to turn the tide somewhat, although a draw against a newly-promoted side (Longford Town) is hardly cause for celebration just yet.
It will be the first visit to the Showgrounds of Bit O’ Red boss Owen Heary’s old club, and at home he may just have a slight advantage. This being said, Bohs know after their brilliant start they can stand up to any side away from home.
They currently boast the best away record in the league, whilst Sligo are the second worst team at home this year.
Sligo Rovers 0-1 Bohemians
St. Patrick’s Atheltic vs Drogheda United (kick-off 7:45pm)
St. Pat’s have put themselves right back in the mix now with a win over Bohemians on Friday last.
They’re now just four points off Cork City in second and just two points adrift of Rovers and Bohs in third and fourth, respectively.
Drogs’ losing streak has now stretched to four games, making for a worrying trend at United Park. They have failed to pick up a point since their draw with Limerick on the 24th of March.
Meanwhile St. Pat’s remain unbeaten in their last five games, with their aforementioned victory over Bohs now sure to add an extra pep to Pat’s step tonight.
St. Patrick’s Athletic 3-1 Drogheda United
Rob Lyons, Pundit Arena