Sligo Rovers will be hoping to bounce back from last week’s defeat to Derry City and move back out of the relegation zone with a result against Drogheda United.
After recording a 1-0 victory over Shamrock Rovers at the Showgrounds two weeks ago, Sligo then fell to a comprehensive 4-0 defeat away to Derry City in their last outing.
“This is an opportunity to bounce back. Last week was very poor but we move on and we are back in The Showgrounds, a place we have tried to make it difficult for teams to come and we want to continue that,” Sligo manager Gerard Lyttle told www.sligorovers.com.
Despite Lyttle’s side now facing a Drogheda side who have scored just once in their last nine games, the Sligo boss stressed that his side will concentrate on their own performance rather than the form that the Louth side are in.
“Drogheda are looking for a result but like all teams in and around us, they are fighting for their place in this league and will come here to give it their all. We don’t worry about their form – we concentrate on trying to producing our own performance with our home crowd behind us.”
The Bit o’ Red have a fully fit squad for this match and welcome John Russell back from suspension.
New signing Benny Igiehon has received international clearance while Rhys McCabe may make his first appearance at the Showgrounds following his debut against Derry last week.
An injury plagued Drogheda United who have failed to win in their last eleven games travel west to take on Sligo in a relegation six pointer on Saturday night.
The Boynesiders slipped to the bottom of the Premier Division following a 2-0 defeat to Finn Harps last week in what was the first of four games and the four sides closest to them in the league.
“We’re on a really bad run at the moment,” Mahon told www.droghedaunited.ie. “What we need is to get a win from somewhere and I’m sure when that happens, a run of results will follow.”
Following this game against Sligo, Drogheda will travel to Galway, who are eleventh in league, to begin the third series of fixtures before hosting St. Patrick’s Athletic, who currently sit ninth.
“We set ourselves a target from these four games and obviously we have nothing to show for from the first one. Everyone knows how important this game is given how tight the situation is at the bottom,” Mahon said.
Drogheda will be without four players through injury in the shape of Kevin Farragher, Jake Hyland, Gavin Brennan and Ryan Masterson. Pete Mahon may also have to do without his first choice centre-backs, as Luke Gallagher and Ciaran McGuigan are rated doubtful.
The Boynesiders are hopeful though that new signing Sean Russell will be eligible to make his debut with his international clearance expected in time for Saturday’s match.
Referee: Ray Matthews
The first meeting between these sides this season ended in a 1-1 draw at United Park with first half goals coming from Gareth McCaffrey (who has since left Drogheda) and Jonah Ayunga.
Sligo Rovers have scored 21 league goals in 21 games this season and have found the net in eight of their ten home league games to date – scoring thirteen at home.
Drogheda on the other hand, have scored just 14 league goals in 21 games this season – six of those coming away from home.
Sligo Rovers 8/15; Draw 3/1; Drogheda United 11/2.
Sligo Rovers 2-0 Drogheda United
Injured: Kevin Farragher, Jake Hyland, Gavin Brennan, Ryan Masterson.
Doubtful: Luke Gallagher, Ciaran McGuigan.