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League Preview: Cabinteely -v- Athlone Town

Thu, Apr 11 2019

CABINTEELY

Cabinteely will be looking to make it three wins on the bounce when they host an out-of-form Athlone Town at Stradbrook on Friday evening. (Kick-Off is at 7.45pm)

Cabinteely secured a tight and tense one-nil victory over Cobh Ramblers last time out as the First Division’s top scorer Rob Manley popped up with a first half winner for Pat Devlin’s side at St Colman’s Park.

Manley’s winner was his seventh strike of the season having just recently signed for the club from fellow First Division outfit Drogheda United.

Speaking ahead of the game with his club’s official media team, Cabo boss Pat Devlin admits that every point will be keenly fought for.

“Every team in this league deserves the utmost respect,” Devlin said.

“They (Athlone) will be certainly getting that from us. We’re no superstars or anything like that. We’re a team that is working hard. And we’re getting results. That’s all it is – nothing else.

“Athlone is going to be a tough assignment. We have several ex-players coming back to us.

“I’m sure they’ll want to prove they should still be with us instead of Athlone. Terry Butler has done a good job. We must make sure we match them all over the pitch. And get the right result.”

In terms of team news for the South Dubliners, Kieran Butler, Paul Fox and Alex Aspil are all expected to miss out with injury.

ATHLONE TOWN

Despite rising as high as second in the First Division after a brilliant start to 2019, Athlone will be hoping to avoid their fourth defeat on the spin when they face high-flying Cabinteely at Stradbrook on Friday evening.

Athlone looked set to snap out of their losing run last time out against Drogheda United after going three-one up just before the hour mark, but they endured a torrid final thirty minutes to lose 5-3 to the Boynesiders at home.

Dean Williams, who has four goals to his name as an Athlone Town player since joining on loan from Shamrock Rovers scored a brace while Evan White also got on the scoresheet for Terry Butler’s side.

There is plenty of ex-Cabinteely representation in the Athlone Town squad with Dean Casey, Aaron Brilly, Kaleem Simon and Christian Lotefa all once of the South Dublin outfit.

Athlone have already surpassed their away points total from last season with six points collected from a possible nine. In 2018, they picked up nothing on their travels.

Should Terry Butler’s side pick up a win at Stradbrook, they could rise as high as fifth in the league table should Shelbourne fall to defeat at United Park against Drogheda.

In terms of team news for the Black and Blue of the Midlands, Ciaran Grogan is the only confirmed absentee following his dismissal in last week’s home defeat.    

Referee: Alan Patchell

MATCH STATS

This has been Cabinteely’s best goal scoring start to the season since they joined the league in 2015. Previously after seven league games, Cabo scored 11 in 2017 while they have 12 goals so far this season.

The last time a Cabinteely player topped the goalscoring charts in the First Division prior to Rob Manley this year was Kieran Marty Waters in 2017. The former Shamrock Rovers star scored 15 goals during that campaign for Cabinteely.

Athlone Town have only left Stradbrook once with all three points since Cabinteely joined the League of Ireland in 2015. Athlone secured a three-one in 2015 at Stradbrook with Sam O’Connor and Daniel Purdy securing all three points on that occasion for Athlone.

BETTING

Cabinteely 10/11; Draw 23/10; Athlone Town 5/2.

PREDICTION

Cabinteely 1-0 Athlone Town

Cabinteely

Injured: Kieran Butler, Paul Fox, Alex Aspil.

Doubtful: None.

Suspended: None.

Athlone Town

Injured: Unknown.

Doubtful: Unknown.

Suspended: Ciaran Grogan.

Suspended: None.