Foster focused on game after FAI blast

DUNDALK manager Ian Foster last night declined to comment after the club publicly distanced itself from his criticism of the FAI earlier this week.

Speaking in the aftermath of his side’s 4-0 hammering at the hands of Shamrock Rovers, Foster slammed the Airtricity League schedule they had been asked to play and said it was hindering their Europa League chances.

The FAI have rejected Foster’s reaction, while in a statement published on the club website Dundalk chairman Gerry Matthews said the board of management would be meeting with the manager to discuss the comments.

Speaking in Sofia ahead of tonight’s match with Levski, the Liverpool native said he would consider the issue after the Europa League second qualifying round tie and would not be drawn further.

The scheduling crisis had caused the former Galway United manager to be downbeat after the defeat to Rovers, he was more positive about his side’s prospects against the Bulgarians.

“It’s going to be difficult,” he said. “We know how strong they are but we’re not here to make up the numbers. We’re here to compete.

“A good result for us would probably be a draw or an away goal. We’d look on that as a huge positive and we just want to go back to Ireland with something to hold on to.

“We’ve had help from Premier League clubs in England who have big scouting networks so they’ve been able to help us with Levski. We know pretty well how they will line out and personnel wise we’ve got a fair idea of how they will start.”

Foster can call upon new signing Steven Lennon, while Fahrudin Kuduzovic and Garry Breen are expected to come back into the side after missing the Rovers game through suspension. Long term absentees Peter Cherrie and skipper Liam Burns are both out.

Levski, who have endured a difficult pre-season, will be without the injured trio of Dusty Myulder, Chakib Benzukan and Georgi Uristov, while key player Hristo Yovov is included in their squad but remains a doubt.

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