Dublin derby set to reach fever pitch

Pitch perfect will be the order of the night for Bohemians, Shamrock Rovers and, of course, Dalymount Park itself as the rescheduled Dublin derby – controversially postponed last month because of concerns about the playing surface – finally goes ahead.

Dublin derby set to reach fever pitch

The Hoops will be looking to bounce back from the disappointment of losing the EA Sports Cup final to Dundalk on Saturday while, on their last outing in the SSE Airtricity League Premier Division, Bohs were held scoreless by relegation-threatened Athlone Town.

“Rovers will be chomping at the bit, especially after being beaten in a cup final,” says Bohs manager Owen Heary, “but we’ll be well prepared and ready for the game.”

That said, Heary could do without an extensive missing persons list before this latest meeting with their fierce Dublin rivals.

Eoin Wearen, Craig Walsh and Jake Hyland are suspended while Kevin Devaney (toe) joins Anto Murphy (ankle) and Dan Byrne (cruciate) among the injured. Meanwhile, Steven Beattie and Roberto Lopes are battling to recover from flu in time for kick-off.

Heary thought his side were “unfortunate not to get three points” from Friday’s “scrappy enough” game in Athlone. “But our attitude was right going into the game, we took the game to them and we need to have the same attitude tonight,” he adds.

Hopes of a league title might long since have disappeared for both sides but, for Shamrock Rovers, the season still holds open a route to glory via the FAI Ford Cup.

And in yesterday’s semi-final draw at FAI headquarters, Pat Fenlon’s men drew home advantage when they were paired with Derry City while, in the other game, St Patrick’s Athletic also won home advantage for their meeting with First Division Finn Harps.

Both ties will be played on Sunday 5 October, and will be broadcast on RTÉ Two, the Pat’s-Harps game kicking off at Richmond Park at 1.45pm, followed by Rovers v Derry at Tallaght Stadium at 3.55pm.

Any replays will be played on Tuesday, October 7 at 7.45pm and will be played to a finish with provision for extra-time and penalties.

Meanwhile, in international news, Martin O’Neill will this morning unveil his provisional squad for next months 2016 European Championship qualifiers against Gibraltar and Germany.

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