For City, it’s all about responding immediately to their late, late defeat at home to Derry City while Rovers will be anxious to break their habit of taking one point instead of three. And both clubs will also be aware that, even though it’s still early in the campaign, Sligo Rovers have already opened up a five-point lead at the top.
“It doesn’t get any tougher than going to Tallaght,” says Cork manager Tommy Dunne, who hopes to have Daryl Horgan and John Dunleavy back fit. “Rovers have had three draws, so they will be looking to get a win. We are in a similar position after the defeat to Derry which took our unbeaten record from us, so we are looking to bounce back.
“I don’t see us being under that much pressure going up there, but maybe for Rovers there is a little bit of pressure. Both sides will want to win, so I think it is going to be an interesting game.”
For the hosts, manager Trevor Croly is hoping that home advantage proves to be just that.
“It feels like we haven’t had a home game in ages as we’ve been playing away in the last few weeks,” he says. “We’re looking forward to getting back to Tallaght and to taking on Cork City for the first time this season.
“Cork have a very good side this year, with a good blend of youth and experience. They have plenty of players that are used to winning games and winning trophies, and so we know it will be a tough encounter. But I am expecting a good, if hard fought, game on the night.”
Jason McGuinness remains out for the Hoops with a hamstring injury, as does David Elebert (groin). Sean O’Connor and Conor Winn have both been sick and are doubts for the game, while Mark Quigley has a slight ankle problem and is also rated doubtful.
The game at Tallaght Stadium kicks off at 8pm.
On the north side of the capital, Sligo Rovers will be looking to maintain their 100% record when they visit Dalymount Park to take on Bohemians (7.05pm), with the defending champions enjoying their best ever start to a season after winning their first six games in all competitions.
Bohs boss Aaron O’ Callaghan knows better than most that his side will have to be on their toes to prevent Ian Baraclough’s men taking that run to seven.
“The level of consistency Sligo have maintained is very good,” he observes “They are able to compete for the best players and they have bought well. They took Evan [McMillan] from us, a really good player, and I was surprised that others didn’t get him.”
Tonight’s other Premier Division fixtures see Derry City at home to Shelbourne and Bray Wanderers hosting UCD (both 7.45pm), while in the First Division it’s Mervue United v Finn Harps (7.45pm), Wexford Youths v Waterford United (8pm) and Athlone Town v Salthill Devon (7.45pm).