Both Bohs and Limerick earned eight points from the opening series of nine league games and so the three points available at Dalymount Park on Friday night would be very welcome to the victor (kick off 7.45pm).
Keith Long’s men began their league campaign with a memorable win over Shamrock Rovers but they had to wait till their last home game for the second win of the season (and they have yet to keep a clean sheet in 2018).
That victory last time out in Dalymount was a 2-1 win over relegation favourites Bray Wanderers and was earned with a Dinny Corcoran injury-time winner.
Their progression to the EA Sports Cup quarter-final has been well deserved with Long utilising his squad to its fullest. An extensive injury list means that Long needs players to step in to his starting XI this week in the league.
Teenager Daniel Grant has been really impressive in the cup games and on his first league start last week in Dundalk, even if Bohs ended up losing 3-0 to the Lilywhites in Oriel Park.
“We conceded poor goals again,” said Long, speaking to the club's official website.
“We just can’t continue to do that. We started off well, Dundalk were passing the ball well and had a lot of possession but they couldn’t get near us.
“But then we shot ourselves in the foot in a seven minute period and found ourselves 2-0 down.
“Those goals were avoidable. We were a lot better in the second half but the damage was already done and Dundalk were comfortable at that stage.
“We did look the more likely team to score for much of the half before they got their third.
“Danny Grant came on for his league debut and did well. He should have had a penalty and he was probably a little too honest staying on his feet as he was fouled.
“At 2-0, that could have brought us back into the game but the damage was done with those mistakes in the first half.”
Last time out, Bohs got by UCD in Easter Monday’s EA Sports Cup second round tie but only after winning a penalty shoot out after the game ended 2-2 after extra time.
“We made ten changes to the starting team that played against Dundalk. Dan Casey was the only player to start both games but we had taken him off against Dundalk,” said Long
“That game was a great test of where our younger players are at – UCD are in form at the top of the First Division and they played their strongest team.
“The team that we put out haven’t played a lot of football together, so there were mistakes. But they didn’t let their heads drop and the players took control of the game to turn it around.
“There was a good Bohs crowd up in Dundalk and our supporters expected us to do better. But they are realistic too.
“Everyone knows that with the ten-team league and clubs with stronger resources, now more than ever there aren’t easy games.
“We want the fans on our side from the start again and the atmosphere to be right. If games are in the balance, our fans can really play their part.
“They can give our players that little bit of extra confidence, so we hope Dalymount is bouncing again and an intimidating place for teams to come and play.”
Limerick have lost their last three games, failing to get a goal, and have won just once away from Markets Field this season – that was the victory over Sligo Rovers back in February.
The form of Tommy Barrett’s men, who have earned just a point in their last five fixtures, is worrying but, with Sligo not playing until Saturday, Limerick can with a result in Dalymount move clear of the relegation play-off position occupied by the Bit O’Red.
It is too early for this game to be called a relegation six pointer as far as Limerick boss Tommy Barrett is concerned.
“Every game is a big game. There are no easy games,” Barrett told the club's official website.
“Bohs are a good side; they’re on the same amount of points as us, they have been in a sticky patch themselves before beating Bray, so I think it will be a difficult game for both sides.
“Dalymount is a tough place to go. We’ll give it our best shot. There’s a long way to go; there are 36 games, we’re nine in.
“Of course, we’re going to try to win the game, and if we can’t win games, definitely away from home let’s try to get results.
“We’ve watched Bohs a couple of times and we’ve watched videos. They can play, they’re physical, they have got some very good goalscorers – Dinny Corcoran, Eoghan Stokes, Keith Ward, they’re all good finishers – so we have to be alert around the box.”
Referee: John McLaughlin
JJ Lunney’s spot kick in the game against UCD last Monday ended a run of three missed penalties by Bohs - Eoghan Stokes couldn’t convert against Derry, Keith Ward missed against St Pat’s and Dylan Watts failed from 12 yards in the league cup game against Cabinteely (even if the player was quickest to score on rebound).
These teams met on the second weekend of the season with the game ending in a 1-1 draw. Limerick have won the last two games prior to that - a 1-0 win in Markets Field and a 2-1 victory in Dalymount.
Bohemians 4/6; Draw 12/5; Limerick 4/1.
Bohemians 1 – 0 Limerick
Injured: Derek Pender (calf), Kevin Devaney (virus), Philly Gannon (hamstring), Rob Cornwall (back), Cristian Magerusan (metatarsal) and Ryan Swan (cruciate).
Doubtful: Dan Byrne (groin), Keith Buckley (hamstring), Paddy Kavanagh (hamstring).
Injured: Mark O’Sullivan.
Doubtful: Eoin Wearen (groin), Daniel Kearns (quad).