Daire Doyle’s Longford Town will be looking to make home advantage count on Friday evening when they host Cabinteely in the second leg of the first round of the promotion/relegation playoff series (kick-off is at 7.45pm).
Longford were held by ten-man Cabo last time out, despite calls for a goal ruled out by referee Alan Carey early on in the game.
However, Cabinteely also had chances themselves – with Paul Fox seeing his header ruled out for offside despite some calls suggesting otherwise.
A new game takes on a new meaning for both sides, with both knowing full well what must be achieved to secure qualification to the next round where Drogheda United lie in waiting.
“You had Dean Zambra, one of our most experienced players playing at left-back and he’s done really well there for us last week,” Town boss Daire Doyle told extratime.ie.
“The two of them were very solid full-backs and they gave us a really good shape in defence and in a back four with lee behind them. With a back four like ours, it’s difficult for any strikers to play against them.
“Paul O’Conor had a really good game as well. We’ll work on what we need to do on the training ground to stop them and a lot of the stuff we did to stop them we did very well in the first-leg.
“We’ll look at it in the next few days. We’ll look to have Shane (Elworthy) and Dean Byrne back so that’s going to give me a few headaches going into next week as to who I’m going to pick.
“I have a real headache as to what team is going to play but they’re problems that I love to have.”
Anto Breslin is the Midlander’s only absentee for the visit of Cabinteely to Stradbrook on Friday evening, missing out with suspension.
Pat Devlin will be looking to provide another night of playoff drama at City Calling Stadium when he takes his Cabinteely side to the Midlands to face Longford Town.
The tie is level after the first game, despite both sides believing they ought to have taken a lead into the second-leg.
However, it is Cabinteely who retain the upper hand over Longford this year, unbeaten against their Midlands counterparts in 2019.
Despite their good record against Longford, Devlin is wary that a significant amount of luck is required to see his side through to the next round.
“We had a very good game last week against Longford. I’m sure they thought they should have won; we felt we should have won. So, it’s all to play for.
“Going through life, you need a bit of luck. This is a play-off final. It’s one game to decide who goes forward to face Drogheda.
“You need a bit of luck. You need to play well; work hard and take your chances. All combined are vital. You do need a bit of luck to get through.
“Somebody has got to win it. It’s got to be decided on the night. Hopefully, it’s us.
“And if we deserve it, even better again. If we don’t deserve it and get a bit of luck, we’ll take that as well.”
Kevin Knight is Cabinteely’s only absentee for the Friday night showdown, missing out suspension following his red card in the first-leg last week.
Referee: Alan Patchell.
Longford Town are yet to defeat Cabinteely in the 2019 campaign. The Green and Whites have defeated the Red and Black of the Midlands twice – while also drawing the remaining two games between the sides.
Longford have only conceded eight league goals at home this term, the joint best in the division along with eventual league winners Shelbourne.
Pat Devlin’s side on the other hand have the worst goalscoring record of the top five of the First Division, with 18 goals to their name from 13 outings.
Longford Town EVS; Draw 21/10; Cabinteely 12/5.
Longford Town 1 - 0 Cabinteely
Suspended: Anto Breslin.
Suspended: Kevin Knight.