LOI TV commentator & host of Between the Stripes LOI podcastKieran Burke delivers his best bets for week 3 of the new LOI season.

It’s been a hugely unpredictable start to the new LOI season across both divisions and I’m not sure we can expect order to be restored just yet as we head into March. With there being Premier Division games on Friday and Monday, you can often find these double-game weeks being very volatile.

As a result, I’m going to shy away from what looks to be a ridiculously competitive set of top-flight fixtures this weekend and instead, I’ll delve into the First Division for this week’s selections.


Finn Harps have looked impressive in the opening weeks with the Donegal men coming from behind to win in Longford on the opening weekend before holding the red-hot title favourites Cork City to a 1-1 draw at Finn Park last week.

In fact, it took an extremely soft and controversial penalty to rescue a point for City with Success Edogun again scoring for the home side. The arrival of Edogun from Treaty United in the winter looks to have breathed new belief into Darren Murphy’s men who now know they have someone to find the back of the net with great regularity when chances are created for the new number nine.

Athlone Town knows what that feels like from Frantz Pierrot’s heroics last season and while the Haitian striker has moved on to pastures new, his replacement Dean Ebbe has hit the ground running at the Midlands club.

The Westmeath men have also enjoyed a promising start to the campaign, routing Wexford in week one before claiming a point in Cork last week against Cobh Ramblers. However, Athlone blew a 3-1 lead in that game with some of their defensive shortcomings from last season reappearing.

With Harps looking a more rounded side than last season and with Edogon looking like being one of the signings of the season, Murphy will expect his side to continue their unbeaten start.

BEST BET: Finn Harps Draw No Bet (EVS) NAP


In week one, I advised readers that Finn Harps looked overpriced for their trip to Longford which they duly won while last week I felt Kerry FC offered value at a price against Bray Wanderers. With 20 minutes to go, my advice looked sound as ten-man Kerry went 2-1 ahead only to ship two late goals.

This week, there are two teams who I feel offer value in the First Division. I backed Longford Town to win in Bray last season when I saw they were available at 3/1 and bigger. The reason I saw that price as being appealing is that Bray Wanderers were one of the poorest organised sides defensively last season and little looks to have changed in that regard during the off-season.

Bray look wide open defensively as seen above on MD1 against UCD.

Bray were blessed to win in Kerry last week while they were terrible in a 2-1 home defeat against ten-man UCD the week prior, this Bray team will give you chances and Longford (3/1) should be chomping at the bit with their intended trip to Wexford called off last week.

Speaking of Wexford, their fans will expect to see a response to the shocking 3-0 loss in Athlone a fortnight ago. A visit from a Cobh side who have shipped six goals in their first two games should give James Keddy’s men an ideal opportunity to bounce back with 6/5 a tempting price.

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*Odds were correct at time of publishing the article