Shamrock Rovers v Dundalk, LOI

Both Rovers and Dundalk have finished in the LOI top three for the last two seasons. Image Credit: INPHO/Ryan Byrne

John Curtis looks forward to the meeting of Shamrock Rovers and Dundalk at Tallaght Stadium, Fri 1st Mar, KO 7:45pm

Form:

Shamrock rovers are going into this on the back of a controversial defeat to bitter rivals Bohemians 1-0 in Dalymount Park on Monday night.

Aaron Greene was sent of midway through the first half for the Hoops. Whether it was yellow or red it certainly divided opinions.

The second talking point was actually Bohemian’s winner when ref Rob Harvey deemed Ronan Finn fouled Keith Ward in the box giving Dinny Corcoran the opportunity to put Rovers one down with a big task on their hands and he did just that.

Rovers will be pleased somewhat with the encouraging and battling signs displayed in having to play with 10 men for the guts of an hour.

Dundalk got their season up and running on Monday night when they beat newly promoted UCD 2-1 in Oriel Park.

The students took the lead in the first half through a Neil Farrugia power strike past Gary Rogers. Dundalk squandered multiple chances in the game.

In the second half they looked like a team possessed with whatever the managerial team said in the dressing room at half time.

The equaliser came for Dundalk after superb work down the right by Sean Gannon to draw a penalty which was calmly slotted home by Pat Hoban.

The winner came for Dundalk when Michael Duffy cut in from the left and let fly past the UCD goalkeeper. Dundalk will be happy with their first win but will feel they have a bit of work to do still.

The Match:

When these two teams meet there typically seems to be a bit of needle. For that reason and more it should be a brilliant night in Tallaght stadium with both sets of fans turning out in their numbers.

I can see it being a bit of a slow burner, but when it gets going expect fireworks from both teams.

The record over last season with these two teams is as follows: four games played against each other 13 total goals scored with one scoreless draw.

Dundalk won twice and with Rovers winning the most recent encounter in controversial style. A Dylan Watts penalty in the last minute decided matters in Oriel Park.

We should expect goals in this one. When Dundalk play you’re almost guaranteed goals (last year they average 2.3 per game).

Rovers are looking to challenge this season after a few years of failing to threaten. They will be happy enough with their start to the season apart from Monday’s defeat to Bohs.

Dundalk will be out to stamp their authority on this game to remind everyone they aren’t going away and want to keep this league title.

See Bar One Racing’s Shamrock Rovers v Dundalk betting here

Team News:

Dundalk will be without long term injuries Patrick McEleney and Robbie Benson.

While Rovers will be without suspended Aaron Greene

Verdict:

I think goals will be a feature in this game once both teams let the shackles off.

Some people are saying the fear factor is kind of gone from Dundalk since Stephen Kenny left. I don’t think this is the case, we’ll certainly know more come Friday night.

Rovers will be stiff opposition for Dundalk and should be the Lilywhites’ most difficult test so far this season – not disrespecting their previous opponents – I can see Dundalk finding their groove in this game and showing too much for Shamrock Rovers on the night.

Nonetheless it should be another great encounter involving two of the LOI’s biggest clubs.

Dundalk to Win and Both Teams to Score at 4/1



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