Bray Wanderers -v- ShelbourneThu, Jul 12 2012
Bray Wanderers will be hoping to build on last week’s impressive performance in Sligo when they welcome Shelbourne to the Carlisle Grounds on Friday evening. The Seagulls drew 1-1 with the league leaders last time out, a result which brought them their first point
since the mid-season break. In their last six games, Wanderers have won just once, a run of form which sees them sitting in ninth position and only six points clear of bottom side UCD.
Director of Football Pat Devlin will be eyeing a strong second half to the season and for his side to climb the league standings. One area in which the Bray tactician will want to improve is the club’s home form with Bray having won just twice on front of their own fans this campaign.
Speaking following last week’s draw at the Showgrounds, Devlin was pleased with the performance.
“It was a good performance and you would have to be happy coming out of the Showgrounds with a point". If we rode our luck a little better it could have been three points” he told the club’s website.
The two sides have met four times already this season and all the games have been extremely close with a single goal the difference between the two on all four occasions. Shels won the league encounter 2-1 back in April at Tolka Park while the pair were drawn against each other in both the FAI Cup and the EA Sports Cup.
Bray have captured five new players so far this transfer window including former MLS winger Brendan King and promising midfielder Lee Dixon from Bohemians. The Seagulls will need to utilise their squad on Friday evening as injuries and suspensions mean that four first team regulars will be missing.
Devlin went onto say that he expects to field some of his new signings on Friday evening.
“It's going to be a tough one for us with so many players missing. We have to get on with it and we will have a couple of new faces in and see what we can produce”
Adam Mitchell and captain Danny O’Connor miss out through suspension while Sean Houston and Dave Webster are both side-lined with injuries. Mitchell was sent off last week while O’Connor picked up his fourth booking of the campaign and serves a one match ban.
Shelbourne will want to improve on their mid-table position when they make the short trip to the south east on Friday evening. Like Bray, Shels are coming into the game full of confidence following their 4-0 hammering of Dundalk last time out. Alan Mathew’s side are currently sixth and victory at the Carlisle Grounds could see the Tolka Park side overtake Derry.
Their away form this season has been decent with just under half of their points coming away from home. They have an impressive record over Friday’s opponents and are undefeated in 12 of their last 13 games against Bray. Shels have also scored fifteen goals on their last six visits to the Carlisle Grounds and will be confident they can continue their fine recent record over Wanderers on Friday.
Despite this, there are just six points separating the two sides in the Airtricity League and Shels boss Alan Mathews will be aware that his side can easily slip down the table with a few poor results.
“You never take anything for granted in this league, regardless of where teams are – top, middle or bottom – you have to go out and do your work and Dundalk were well in the game. We had to play really well.” He told MNS.
Barry Clancy scored in the cup game between the sides at the Carlisle Grounds in April but the midfielder will once again miss out due to suspension. Meanwhile on the injury front, Ian Ryan remains in the treatment room and Glenn Cronin is still a couple of weeks away from a return to action with an ankle complaint.
Referee: Neil Doyle
There have been over 2.5 goals scored in Bray Wanderers' last eight home games in the Airtricity League.
Shelbourne are undefeated in 12 of their last 13 matches against Bray in all competitions.
The two sides met at the Carlisle Grounds in the FAI Cup earlier in the season. Kieran Marty Waters cancelled out Barry Clancy’s first half strike before Shels progressed in the replay.
Bray Wanderers 7/4; Draw 12/5; Shelbourne 7/5.
Bray 0-2 Shelbourne.
Bray Wanderers Injury News: Dave Webster (Knee), Sean Houston (Thigh).
Bray Wanderers Suspension News: Adam Mitchell, Danny O’Connor.
Shelbourne Injury News: Ian Ryan, Glenn Cronin (Ankle).
Shelbourne Suspension News: Barry Clancy.