UCD v St Patrick’s Athletic (UCD Bowl, Sunday 3pm)
THEIR PRIDE STUNG by recent barbs in the media, UCD will be out to prove a point when high-flying St Patrick’s Athletic visit the UCD Bowl this afternoon.
The Students still find themselves adrift of faltering Dundalk at the bottom of the table and this week, both manager Martin Russell and club PRO Philip Bourke publicly attacked what they see as unfair treatment by RTÉ’s MNS.
“Recent comments have been a little bit patronizing, hinting that there is no pressure,” Russell said after it was suggested that there is less at stake for college players than those at other Premier Division clubs.
“The pressure is from within. Any young player that comes to our club is asked to reach their maximum potential in football.”
The Students will be hoping that they can catch Pat’s off guard, with this fixture falling between the two legs of the Inchicore side’s Europa League qualifier against Siroki Brijeg. After losing valuable ground in the title race against Drogheda last time out though, Liam Buckley knows that his side can ill afford another misstep.
Team news: UCD are without Chris Mulhall(groin), Sean Russell (back), Ger Barron (foot), Cillian Morrison (ankle) and Graham Rusk (knee).
St Pat’s captain Conor Kenna serves a one-match ban for picking up four yellow cards but John Russell returns from his own suspension.
Form (last five league): UCD WLDLL St Pat’s WWWDL
Odds: UCD 9/2 Draw 13/5 St Pat’s 4/7
Referee: R Rogers
Sligo Rovers v Cork City (The Showgrounds, Sunday 7pm)
CORK CITY TRAVEL to the Showgrounds tonight in hope rather than expectation as they take on a wounded Sligo Rovers, still reeling from Thursday’s Europa League defeat in Slovakia.
After a run of form which saw them pick up just five points from 12 in the league, the Premier Division leaders ground out a hard-fought win against Derry City last week to get their challenge back on track.
Cork’s last defeat in the league came in the corresponding fixture back in April and although the Leesiders are unbeaten in nine since then, manager Tommy Dunne knows that they will need to get the ball down and pass it about if they are to extend that run.
“It will be a tough game for us,” Dunne told CorkCityFC.net. “They are the in-form side, and they are also the league leaders, so if we can get something out of it, it would be a good result.
“That said, I think we are dangerous team ourselves and like any team in this league we are capable of getting a result anywhere. The Showgrounds is always a tough place to go, but the surface is good and it’s a place you can play good football, so we will be positive and try to get the best result we can.”
Team news: Daryl Horgan (hamstring) is likely to be unavailable while Davin O’Neill (groin), Gearóid Morrissey (ankle), Kalen Spillane (Achilles) and Dan Murray (groin) are all injury doubts.
For Sligo, top scorer Danny North returns from suspension but Iarfhlaith Davoren serves a one-match ban after picking up four bookings.
Form: Sligo LDWDW Cork DDDWD
Odds: Sligo 4/7 Draw 11/4 Cork 9/2
Referee: P Tuite