The home side have had a difficult start to the 2019 season.
Cork dropped points in losing to St Patrick’s Athletic and Waterford in their opening two games. To be just the six points off the top of the league with a game in hand after five games shows the extent to which John Caufield’s side seem to have bounced back.
They are unbeaten in three now including important wins on the road to Finn Harps and Sligo Rovers. A scoreless draw against Derry City was sandwiched in between.
There’s plenty to improve upon for Cork. Last time out they emerged winners from a 4-3 gun-fight against Finn Harps. Caufield and his coaching team will want their defence to improve markedly on that particular showing.
A word must be given to Gearoid Morrissey, his double against Harps helped win the three points. His first goal on the night is a must-watch.
Oh Gearoid Morrissey… Stick the fry on and savour this outrageous goal from the @CorkCityFC man against @FinnHarpss last night which helped John Caulfield's men to edge a seven-goal thriller. Stunning #RTEsoccer pic.twitter.com/fiGOkBKDGT
— RTÉ Sport (@RTEsport) March 9, 2019
It’s been much smoother sailing for the travelling Bohemians this year.
Three wins to get going, admittedly two were against the league’s bottom two sides. Two draws, scoreless against new league-leaders Shamrock Rovers, and 1-1 against Derry City last time out further enhanced their burgeoning reputation as one of the division’s better sides.
Derry were the first team to score against Bohs this season. To see them absorb that happening and fight on to claim a point late in the second half should give them further impetuous ahead of a tricky tie at Turner’s Cross.
Cork City lost seven league games last season. Only two of those defeats came at home. Once to Sligo, and once to the champions-to-be, Dundalk.
While Caufield’s side have shipped a number of departures and are enduring a diminished budget, they appear to be finding their feet again.
Keith Long’s side have been reliant on the goals of February’s Player of the Month, Dinny Corcoran. Three goals in three games saw the Dublin side claim three wins.
Corcoran has failed to score in his last two and Bohs have dropped four points. At this point it would be remiss of me not to direct you to his appearance on Countdown this week.
"My mother was a big fan growing up and I watched it with her. She thought I was very good so she applied for me…"https://t.co/9Q1SCVEU6B
— RTÉ Soccer (@RTEsoccer) March 11, 2019
A man of many talents.
Back to the action at Turner’s Cross on Friday night.
I can see the result of this game being significant for both sides. Momentum is being gathered by both and a defeat for either will change that narrative.
Cork have the edge in last season’s head-to-heads. In the league they won three from four, the aggregate from those games stands at 8-4. After a 1-1 draw in the FAI Cup semi-final, Cork dispatched Bohemians 2-1 in the replay.
Cork should find a way to win. They’ve a positive habit of getting into the lead in their games this season. While it’s a small sample size, on average they are scoring inside 30 minutes and they score first 70 per cent of the time versus conceding after 42 mins on average and going behind 22 per cent of the time.
My first preference is a Half Time Correct Score of 1-0 to Cork City at 13/5
Next up, I’ll take Cork City to Win and Under 3.5 Goals at 5/4