Preview: St Patrick's Athletic -v- Dundalk

  • Fri, Sep 24, 2010 @ 8:41

St Pats host Dundalk on Friday night with the Dublin side still chasing a European spot while the visitors attempt to put a safety cushion between them and the relegation playoffs. (Kick off 7.45)

Dundalk will be looking to end a 1000 minute goalless streak against the Inchicore side who are also chasing an FAI Cup for the first time since 1961.

The sides have met four times so far this season with Pats winning three and the most recent ending in a scoreless draw at Oriel Park.

Recent form has seen both sides, who at one stage each topped the table, fall from their respective perches with a possible relegation battle looming for the Lilywhites.

Dundalk's erratic form has seen them thrash Shamrock Rovers 5-1 before being beaten 2-0 by Bray as Ian Foster fails to string any decent run of results together while Pats have gone into freefall with only one win in their last six league games.

David McAllister returns from suspension and both Garret O'Connor and Chris Bennion return having been cup-tied for the recent FAI Cup quarter final match against Sporting Fingal. Paul Byrne (ankle) Gareth Coughlan (broken leg) and Shane Guthrie (dead leg) are all sidelined for the clash.

Ian Foster will have to plan without defender Shaun Kelly through suspension while former Saints midfielder Alan Cawley remains out with a back injury.

Speaking ahead of the game Saints manager Pete Mahon has expressed a desire to still finish second despite people maintaining a European place would suffice.

“Some people might feel it doesn't matter where we finish as long as we get into Europe but it matters to me and we are aiming to try and finish in second place. Dundalk is a crucial game and one that can make a tremendous difference as to where we finish.”

While Bohemians are trying to catch Rovers we are trying to catch them and a win tomorrow brings us within four points of them with a home game against them coming up,” he added.

Speaking to Steven Lennon spoke of the 12 year record against Pats, having failed to score, and admits that the majority of the squad do not realise this statistic.

“Is that right? Obviously, new players coming in don't know that,” Lennon, who is still chasing his first goal after ten appearances in all competitions added, “Tippy has scored a few goals since he's come in, that's what he does, he gets into areas and does well. If you give him the ball he'll score goals.

Faz as well, I've seen his goals clip on YouTube, it's unreal the goals he has scored. There are goal threats there; they just need to get chances created for them.”

Team Pld Pts
Shamrock Rovers3672
Derry City3665
St Patrick's Athletic3662
Bohemian FC3658
Drogheda United3641
Sligo Rovers3637
Cork City3631