SPORTING Fingal will have to stand up to the big boys of the Premier Division if they are to have any success this season, according to keeper Darren Quigley.
Liam Buckley's side are enjoying a relatively successful season, with a place in the last eight of the FAI Cup secure thanks to Monday's narrow win on penalties over Limerick, and they are also in contention for a European place for next season, Fingal already with a taste for Europe in their mouths after this summer's battles with Portuguese side Maritimo.
But Fingal have not managed to do the business against the bigger sides in the league, failing to manage even one win in nine games against league leaders Shamrock Rovers, champions Bohemians and second-placed St Pats, something that needs to change -- starting tonight at home to Bohs.
"We haven't beaten any of the top three and this is a great opportunity of changing that," said keeper Quigley as Bohs come to the Morton Stadium.
"There is some more spice to this fixture because it's Bohemians we're facing, who we're trying to catch for third place."
Fingal could be boosted here by the return of former Bohs man Colin Hawkins, who has been out of action for over a month due to a rib injury.
"Colin Hawkins played his first game on Monday for two months since breaking his ribs and his return is a major plus," says manager Liam Buckley.
"It's vital for our prospects of finishing above them that we get the three points against Bohemians. Our games earlier in the season were close but we're in good shape for this one."
Bohs are in form now but their cause is hampered here by an injury to Paul Keegan, who will lose his record as an ever-present in the league (one of only a handful in the league along with Shamrock Rovers man Alan Mannus, St Pats keeper Gary Rogers and Sligo defender Alan Keane).
"Sporting Fingal will be looking to beat us on their home ground. There hasn't been much between us in any of the games this season," said Bohs boss Fenlon.
Shamrock Rovers, fortunate to beat Longford Town in the FAI Cup last week, aim for their fifth straight league win as they take on Sligo Rovers in Tallaght.
"Obviously we'll be looking to start this quarter as well as we finished the last; we want to maintain our run in the league," says manager Michael O'Neill. "But Sligo are playing well, and winning at the moment so it's going to be a difficult one. If we are at our best though, we should win the game.
"It's good to have the game at home, as we have been playing some very good football in Tallaght lately, and we'll be looking to do that again tomorrow night."
Sligo come into the game without two key players. Top scorer Padraig Amond has played his last game for the club, having signed for Portuguese top-flight club Pacos Ferreira earlier this week, while Romo Boco is on international duty with Benin.
And Dundalk -- without a league win in seven games -- try to lift their season against Bray Wanderers. "It's a massive game for us; I don't know how many games it is now since we've won," defender Shaun Kelly said.
"The boys have been saying in training this week that it's a massive game and that we need the three points. I think everybody knows that and we're well up for it.
"We have trained well since the Bohs game. We have been working hard on the training pitch. It's just one game but we've had that many games during the season that the little break we had shouldn't affect us. I think we're maybe even fresher, if anything."