Friday night’s clash at Richmond Park sees unbeaten St. Patrick’s Athletic host Cork City, who have won three of their last four games.
City beat Dundalk 3-2 at Turners Cross last week in sodden conditions, with manager Tommy Dunne telling CorkCityFC.net: “We are going to Inchicore, which is never an easy venue, and facing the in-form team in the division. They are unbeaten; they have gone to Derry and won, gone to Sligo, and should have won, and they had a great win over Shamrock Rovers as well.
“I know (St. Pat’s manager) Liam Buckley from doing the pro-licence course and he is very thorough, well-organised and always wants his sides to play good football, which they are doing at the moment, so we are under no illusions as to how difficult it will be.
“From our own point of view, it has been a bit of an indifferent start to the season. After a slow start we have picked up a few good results in recent weeks, but we are still not 100% where we want to be. It will be an interesting game for all involved; we are looking forward to it and we would like to think we can be competitive.”
Shane O’Connor and Jamie Murphy remain sidelined with foot and ankle injuries respectively. Stephen Mulcahy, Kevin Muuray and Neil Horgan are also out, with John Dunleavy facing a late fitness test. Gavin Kavanagh has college exams while skipper Dan Murray is a serious doubt with a stomach injury.
St. Pat’s will be looking to extend their unbeaten start to the season to 11 league games with manager Liam Buckley stating: “We’re missing a few bodies at the moment, but thankfully we’ve lads who are ready to come in as Cork’s form in the last few weeks has been very good and Tommy has them playing well. You expect a difficult game from any Cork City side so they’ll come here full of confidence, but we’ve been playing well lately so hopefully we can keep that form up in Inchicore this Friday.”
Pat’s have a clean bill of health going into the game, with only one other side (table topping Sligo Rovers) still unbeaten.
Kevin Doyle, who was this week named in Giovanni Trapattoni’s 23 man squad for Euro 2012, has played for both clubs, moved cross channel aged 22 and currently has 46 senior international caps.