Shelbourne host Cabinteely at Tolka Park on Saturday evening looking to make amends for last weekend's shock loss to Athlone Town, while the visitors are looking to bounce back from a heavy defeat to UCD. Kick-off 7:15pm.
After Owen Heary had got his reign as Shelbourne boss off to a dream start against Cobh Ramblers, the Reds welcome Cabinteely to Tolka Park on Saturday evening aiming to make amends for last weekend's shock 1-0 defeat to Athlone Town.
Despite the defeat last weekend, the Reds boss has had several opportunities to run the rule over his side in recent friendlies. After an excellent performance in the 2-1 defeat to English Championship side Leeds United in Tolka on Wednesday evening, Heary will be looking for another excellent display against Cabo and claim all three points.
“It’s more disappointing the fact that you don’t put that performance in against Athlone,” Heary told Extratime.ie. “You go out and lift your game because you're playing Leeds [but] we’ve told them that’s the level of performance they need to put in week in, week out – they worked extremely hard off the ball, but they worked great when they had the ball and they need to take that into Saturday's game now.”
After a large crowd turned out for the Leeds friendly, the Shels boss is hoping for another large attendance against Cabo as he believes his players respond to a strong Reds backing.
“Yeah, we’re always looking for good crowds and they need to get behind the players and when they do get behind the players, the players react to it," said Heary. "You seen tonight [Wednesday] the Shels fans getting behind them and the Shels team reacted and got a good performance out of it. It’s just important that we go out professional, get three points in the bag.”
With wins for both UCD and Drogheda United on Friday evening, Shelbourne know a defeat against Cabo will all but end their play-off ambitions as they currently trail third place Drogs by ten points, albeit with a game in hand – and the sides meet next Friday evening in Tolka.
After a record victory against Athlone Town two weeks ago, Cabinteely saw their ambitions of recording back-to-back victory diminish quickly as Eddie Gormley’s side were beaten 4-1 by UCD in Belfield.
Despite the win two weeks ago, four goal hero Joe Doyle was absent from his side's defeat to the Students. If the forward is available for Cabo on Saturday he would offer a greater threat going forward for the side who have only scored 13 goals in 16 league games.
Despite the recent result, Cabo can take confidence from the fact that when the sides met at Tolka Park earlier in the season, they forced Shelbourne to fight back from a goal down to snatch a 1-1 draw after Kevin Knight had given them a first-half lead.
In the side's last meeting back in early May, Cabinteely were overwhelmed by the Reds, then managed by Kevin Doherty, as Shels ran out easy 4-0 victors at Stradbrook Road despite missing a second-half penalty.
Referee: David Keeler.
Since Cabo’s introduction into the League of Ireland, the sides have met seven times and Shelbourne have won five of those with the other two games ending in draws, both of which have come at Tolka Park.
Joe Doyle is Cabo’s top scorer in the First Division with five goals, all scored over two games against Athlone Town, while Shels' top scorer James English has netted eight times in the league.
Shelbourne 1/3; Draw 7/2; Cabinteely 15/2.
Shelbourne 3-0 Cabinteely.
Doubtful: Alan Kehoe, Ryan Robinson.
Unavailable: Jamie Doyle.