Shamrock Rovers -v- UCDThu, May 03 2012
Shamrock Rovers will be looking to get back to winning ways in the league when they take on UCD in the Airtricity League, Premier Division on Friday night.
Despite an excellent performance last Friday night, the Hoops were held to a 1-1 draw by Derry City. Stephen Kenny’s side had a 100 per cent record at home in the league before that and will be hoping to secure a win against the Students in the game at Tallaght Stadium, which has an 8pm kick-off.
Ciaran Kilduff is having an operation on his foot today and remains out for the Hoops. Ken Oman has also been ruled out with a hamstring injury. Killian Brennan has a slight calf problem and will be assessed before the game. Stephen O’Donnell has resumed training and while he won’t make Friday’s game against UCD, he is expected to return for Monday’s Leinster Senior League game against St Patrick’s Athletic. Kerrea Gilbert is back in contention after his recent lay-off.
Hoops boss, Stephen Kenny said: “We have to bring the level of intensity that we brought last week; we created a lot of chances and we have to continue to do that. I thought our performance was excellent, I thought we passed the ball well. We are creating chances here and we have to continue that, but also need to be a bit more clinical on the night.
“UCD pass the ball well and are a technically good team. But we must make home advantage count and play at the level that we are capable of.”
Martin Russell takes his UCD team to Tallaght to face Shamrock Rovers in search of his side’s first away victory of the season.
Shamrock Rovers dominated UCD in both the league and the cup last season winning all but one of the fixtures – a 2-2 draw in the cup but UCD were to lose the replay 6-0. UCD for their part pushed the Champions close on a number of occasions, once in the Tallaght Stadium where the Students could have been 2-0 up at half time and again in the UCD Bowl in the final game of the season when they made Rovers work for everything to gain the full three points.
The Students come into the game following a 1-1 draw with high flying Drogheda United last Friday night in the UCD Bowl. In an entertaining game, both sides could stake a claim to all three points with UCD missing a golden opportunity to go ahead at 1-1 and Drogheda seeing the ball cleared off the line when some may have felt it crossed the line. It was a solid performance from UCD as they looked to bounce back from a demoralising defeat to St Patrick’s Athletic in Richmond Park the previous week.
UCD who currently lie in 10th place in the league will be looking to build on some impressive home performances and improve their away form starting this Friday.
Martin Russell: “This fixture represents what is great about Irish football. A top club, well run, in a great stadium against a club that is devoted to developing young Irish players in the right manner. I am really looking forward to the game.”
Referee: Dave McKeon.
Shamrock Rovers scored six goals against UCD in three separate games last season. They beat them 6-1 and 6-0 in the league, and also won 6-0 in the cup.
UCD have only won one of their last 21 away league games.
Shamrock Rovers won the last league fixture between these two sides 3-2, a result which saw them clinch the Airtricity Premier Division title.
Shamrock Rovers 3/10; Draw 7/2; UCD 9/1.
Shamrock Rovers to win 2-0.
Shamrock Rovers injury news: Ciaran Kilduff, Ken Oman, Stephen O’Donnell, Killian Brennan (doubt)
Shamrock Rovers Suspension News: None
UCD injury news: Ger Barron (Toe), Chris Mulhall (Groin), Tomas Boyle (Back)
UCD Suspension News: None.
Brian Fitzgerald is a Dublin-based reporter who has followed Cork City since the mid 1990's. Brian can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or followed on twitter @B_Twitzgerald