With four wins in their last six league games, Bray are one of the form sides in the league, something not lost on Pats manager Liam Buckley as his side looks to retain its three-point advantage over Derry City.
“The break was good to give some of our lads time off and the squad looks rested and ready to go again,” says Buckley, “but we know we’ll need to be at it tonight as Bray will be tough opponents.”
Derry will be without the league’s top scorer, Rory Patterson, through suspension as they host Bohemians at the Brandywell in a game which will double as a dress rehearsal for the EA Sports Cup quarter-final between the two clubs at Dalymount Park on Monday.
Defending champions Sligo Rovers, currently lying third, travel to Tolka Park where bottom club Shelbourne, now under new manager Johnny McDonnell, know they’ll have their work cut out to claim only their third win of the campaign, having seen off Bohs last time out. The game kicks off at 8pm.
Also keen to secure back-to-back wins will be Cork City who follow up a home victory over Drogheda United before the break with a trip to secondbottom UCD.
“This is a huge game for us,” says manager Tommy Dunne. “We will have to fight and work extremely hard and do whatever it might take to get the three points.”
However, City have a number of absentees tonight, with Dan Murray, Kevin Murray, Colin Healy, Danny Morrissey and Brian Lenihan all out.
Elsewhere in the Premier Division this evening, Drogheda United host Shamrock Rovers and Limerick are at home to Dundalk while, in the First Division, it’s Salthill Devon v Longford Town, Waterford United v Finn Harps and Athlone Town v Mervue United.
All tonight’s games kick off at 7.45pm unless otherwise indicated.