Sligo Rovers -v- St. Patrick's AthleticSat, Oct 13 2012
Sligo Rovers can claim the Airtricity Premier Division title on Saturday should they beat St. Patrick’s Athletic at The Showgrounds.
A temporary terrace has been assembled to increase the attendance for the last two home games of the season. A crowd of over 5,000 is expected for the possible title decider.
St. Pat’s are in second place, six points behind the Bit o’Red with just three games left.
Defender Seamus Conneely picked up a hamstring injury in last weekend’s draw with Cork City and is doubtful for the visit of the Saints. Long term absentees Iarfhlaith Davoren, Alan Keane and Danny North remain out.
Ian Baraclough acknowledged the importance of the game but says it’s not a title decider for him.
“We have three games to get our points and the first one is on Saturday. It is obviously a very important game for both teams and it doesn’t change how we approach it but I don’t think it is a decider for us.
"Everyone wants to play on a greater stage, that is the same for all players. I think the anticipation and the excitement is a testament of how far they have come, that over 5,000 people will be coming to watch them on Saturday. Quite a few will be used to it, they have played in the Cup finals and European matches. For the younger lads it is something that is great for them and something I think they will revel in."
ST PATRICK’S ATHLETIC
The Saints will be travelling to Sligo knowing that a win is needed to keep them in the title race. The two sides have drawn twice already this season and a draw will give the visitors an extremely slim chance as Sligo’s goal difference is far superior.
Ryan Coombes is missing as he’s on international duty with the Republic of Ireland u19s, Jake Kelly is a doubt with an ankle injury and Mark Rossiter is still out with a cruciate ligament injury that he picked up earlier in the season.
Liam Buckley is not under-estimating Sligo though.
“Everyone is in good spirits following the win last weekend, and now we’re all fully focused on the match in Sligo on Saturday. There’s no doubt in my mind that it is a league defining game. We’ll be going out to do ourselves justice and see where the result will take us.
“The games between the sides have been tight to date, and I’d imagine it’ll be similar this weekend. They’re unbeaten at home this season in the league so we know it’ll be tough.”
Referee: Damien Hancock.
St. Pat’s have three former Sligo Rovers: Brendan Clarke, John Russell and Darren Meenan. Sligo Rovers have four former St. Pat’s players: Gary Rogers, Joseph Ndo, Danny North and Mark Quigley.
Sligo have not lost a home game in the league this season and St. Pat’s have not lost an away game in the league.
The last time Rovers failed to score in a home league game was against St. Pat’s in July 2011.
Sligo Rovers 10/11; Draw 9/4; St. Patrick’s Athletic 3/1.
Sligo Rovers Injury News: Danny North, Iarfhlaith Davoren, Alan Keane.
Sligo Rovers Suspension News: None.
St. Patrick’s Athletic Injury News: Mark Rossiter, Jake Kelly.
St. Patrick’s Athletic Suspension News: None.