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Greene given Bohs backing

BOHEMIANS boss Pat Fenlon believes that young forward Aaron Greene has the potential to go all the way in the game -- once he settles in to life at Dalymount Park.

Greene was one of the surprise packets in the League of Ireland last season, becoming an instant hit with Galway United after a mid-season move from non-league St Francis.

His form earned Greene cross-channel interest and after a successful trial he was offered a three-year contract with Championship side Peterborough United and instant promotion to the first team. But that deal fell through due to compensation demands from his former club in Dublin, so Bohs swooped to sign the Tallaght man.

The move to Bohs hasn't gone according to plan as Greene has started just one league game for the Gypsies, but he'll get another chance to shine in tonight's EA Sports Cup tie away to Monaghan United and Fenlon says he never doubted the player's ability.

"Aaron has real potential, he certainly has the ability to play at a higher level than the one he's at now," says Fenlon.

"It takes young players time to get used to the demands of a club like Bohemians and Aaron has gone though a bit of that since he came to the club.

"He's only started one game for us in the league and I took him off early in that game, at home to Drogheda, as he wasn't doing as well as he could. He was very nervous and anxious.

"But he came off the bench away to Sligo last Saturday and he was excellent. He played a big role for us in a big win and that's a sign of what he's really capable of.

"Aaron is a good player now and I know he will get even better in time, but it takes time at a club like this.

"No disrespect to Galway United but there are much higher demands at a club like this. You are expected to play well in every game, there is a massive expectation on you week in week out and it's a challenge for Aaron to deal with that and overcome it. But I have no doubt that he will," added Fenlon.

"He was disappointed that the move to England didn't go through at the end of last season and he still has ambitions to play across the water. But if he keeps progressing and keeps working hard, he can do that.

"He hasn't had as many opportunities in our first team as he'd have liked but he sent out a notice of what he can do with his display in Sligo and I'll be looking for another big game from him against Monaghan tonight."

As holders, Bohs are keen to skip past Monaghan tonight and into the League Cup quarter-finals, but it's also a question of priorities for the Gypsies as they have three massive games on the way: the Setanta Sports Cup final against St Pats on Saturday, a league game against the league-leading Saints and then another big Dublin derby against Shamrock Rovers.

Some changes tonight are enforced as players like Stephen Gray, Ken Oman and Glenn Cronin are injured while Paul Keegan and Killian Brennan have knocks, so Bohs will give their youngsters a chance.

"Lads like Gary Burke, Lee Dixon, Shane Keely and Stephen Traynor will come into the squad and some of them may play," says Fenlon.

Monaghan had been on a superb run which included a shock win at Cork City, but have slipped up in recent games against Derry City and Mervue United.

"There are no second chances in the Cup so we will be determined to get a win. Bohemians are Premier Division champions and are well on the way to retaining that title, so we have to respect them," said Monaghan boss Mick Cooke.

"On our general form this season we are well capable of getting the required result. There was a great turnout and even a better atmosphere against Derry City. Hopefully we can have the same again for Bohemians and make the home advantage pay."