Frost eyes semi-final berth

JOHN FROST wants in-form St. Patrick’s Athletic to put their Setanta Sports Cup semi-final qualification ‘to bed’ with victory over Dungannon Swifts at Richmond Park tonight.

“We want to win to make sure we qualify,” said left-back Frost. “Obviously, we want to top the group as well, but we just want to nail down getting out of it first.”

Manager John McDonnell has a full squad to pick from with confidence high after Friday’s 1-0 league win in Derry.

In the other Group 2 game, Cork City travel to Portadown with just 14 fit players. Gareth Farrelly and Colin Healy remain ineligible under FIFA rule while injuries rule out Liam Kearney (ankle), Sean Kelly (dead leg), Colin O’Brien (hamstring) and Brian O’Callaghan (groin). Winger Billy Woods, who is part-time, is unable to travel due to work. Midfielder Brendan Daly is promoted from the reserves.

Bottom of the table Portadown have midfielder Michael Collins available despite serving a four-match Irish League ban.

Derry City boss Pat Fenlon has told his players to just relax and play ahead of tonight’s big Group 1 clash against Linfield at the Brandywell. “I think some of the players are trying too hard,” said Fenlon after successive defeats to Linfield, last week, and St. Pat’s in the league. “I want them to relax, chill out and play the game. I don’t want them to see it as a chore.”

Dave Rogers comes back in at left-back for Sean Hargan (ankle) while central defender Ken Oman (hamstring) and midfielder Barry Molloy (shin) are unlikely to be risked.

Group leaders Linfield have both midfielder Michael Gault and defender Steven Douglas available after suspension. Miko Vilmunen starts in goal in place of Dan Connor (knee) as injury-hit holders Drogheda United face Glentoran at United Park. Graham Gartland, Richie Baker, Steven Gray, James Keddy and Shane Barrett are all out injured also while Paul Keegan, suspended anyway, is away with the Ireland under-21s for a friendly in Holland. Glentoran remain without long-term injured Colin Nixon and Darren Lockhart, though boss Paul Millar waits on striker Tim McCann and defender Cullen Feeney.

Cobh Ramblers claimed their first points in the Eircom League First Division with a goal by Gareth cambridge gave them a 1-0 victory over Finn Harps at St Colman’s Park yesterday.

Meanwhile Wexford Youths’ dream start to the season was ended with a 3-0 drubbing by Athlone Town yesterday afternoon. Colm Heffernan put Town ahead after 35 minutes. Noel McGee doubled the advantage after 52 minutes and David O’Dowd added the third on 86 minutes.

Wexford are now in fourth place in the First Division while Michael O’Connor’s Athlone side climb up to second behind early season leaders Dundalk.

Tonight’s Setanta Cup fixtures (7.45 unless stated): Group 1: Derry City v Linfield (8.05) Drogheda United v Glentoran. Group 2: Portadown v Cork City St. Patrick’s Athletic v Dungannon.

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