Thursday 27 October 2016

League of Ireland Previews

Garry Doyle

Published 07/10/2016 | 02:30

Bohemians manager Keith Long. Photo by Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile
Bohemians manager Keith Long. Photo by Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile

Bohemians v Shamrock Rvs

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Dalymount Park (7.45)

League form: Bohemians LLWWL, Shamrock Rovers WLDWD

Match odds: Bohemians 13/5, Shamrock Rovers Evens, Draw 23/10

Referee: Paul Tuite (Dublin)

Team news: Bohs continue to operate without striker Issy Akinade, who is recovering from illness, while Derek Pender is a doubt. Rovers have Sean Heaney suspended, while Trevor Clarke is away on international duty with the Ireland U-19s. Luke Byrne is still out.

Talking point: Having lost comprehensively in their two previous league meetings this season, Bohs are seeking to avenge their 4-0 and 3-1 defeats to their greatest rivals. Inconsistency has plagued their season, though. "It's our last home game of the season - we want to send the supporters home happy," said manager Keith Long.

Verdict: Draw

St Pat's Ath v Wexford Yths

Richmond Park (7.45)

League form: St Pat's WLDLD, Wexford Youths LLDLL

Match odds: St Pat's 2/5, Wexford Youths 13/2, Draw 10/3

Referee: Anthony Buttimer (Cork)

Team news: David Cawley and Keith Treacy remain doubts for St Pat's while Sean Hoare is away with the Ireland U-21 side. Wexford, meanwhile, have been hit by the decision of five of their players - Stephen Last, Conor O'Keeffe, Eric Molloy, Andy Mulligan, Danny Ledwith - to emigrate to New Zealand. Additionally, Aidan Keenan is suspended, while Gary Delaney is out injured.

Talking point: St Pat's season is as good as over. Safe from relegation, out of the running for Europe, it is simply a case of seeing the year out. Wexford need points, though, having picked up just seven from their last 15 games as they battle to stay up.

Verdict: Draw

Finn Harps v Bray Wanderers

Finn Park (8.0)

League form: Finn Harps LLLLD, Bray Wanderers WWWW

Match odds: Finn Harps 11/4, Bray Wanderers 10/11, Draw 12/5

Referee: Paul McLoughlin (Monaghan)

Team news: Harps have to plan without Kevin McHugh, who has a finger injury, and they are also missing Ruairi Keating, Josh Mailey and Dave Scully. Bray have no injuries or suspensions.

Talking point: Whereas Harps have scored in only one of their last 10 league games, Bray have found form in recent weeks, winning their last five games in succession, which no-one could have foreseen after eight games of the season, when they had just four points on the board. "We need to build on the Sligo performance and get some more points on the board," said Harps manager Ollie Horgan.

Verdict: Away win

Compiled by Garry Doyle

Irish Independent

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