Finn Harps manager Paul Hegarty returns to the dugout after a four game ban as his side welcome Shamrock Rovers to Ballybofey on Friday night (kick-off 8.00pm) as the first third of the season comes to an end.
Hegarty would have been delighted to watch his side end a seven game losing streak in Galway last Friday night and also bring to an end over seven hundred minutes without a goal.
"We went to Galway United last week then for a game that we simply couldn't lose and after going behind twice I was very pleased to see us come back to get a draw, although I felt that we were the better team.
"It was a massive improvement from the Derry game (in the League Cup) and I though that the attitude of the lads was tremendous."
The Harps boss though is not happy to still be conceding silly goals: "We conceded two awful goals and we are not doing enough to keep clean sheets. It's frustrating as we have enough quality players at the other end of the field to score goals."
After an awful run of injuries, the treatment room at Finn Park at last is beginning to empty.
Stephen Parkhouse returned to action last week after a month out, and found himself on the scoresheet along with his strike partner Conor Gethins.
"I think that us breaking our recent scoring duck was thanks in no small part to having big Stephen Parkhouse back on board again" commented Hegarty.
"Parky set up the first and scored a screamer for the second. It was great to have himself and Conor back together - I think that Parky has been badly missed. Hopefully now the injury situation will improve and we can get out a settled team for a change."
Only long term absentees Jonathan Minnock and Gary Beckett remain out as Rovers come to Ballybofey. Beckett though is improving on a daily basis and is not far off playing his first game in the blue of Harps.
Rovers started the season on fire, picking up ten points from their first four games. However, since then, they have only managed two draws in six games. Last weekend they drew with Derry City at Tolka Park.
"We have a chance on Friday on home turf to end the first third on a winning note after a run that has seen us slip down the table", said Hegarty.
"But, it is still early days yet and we have plenty of time to get the show back on the road – starting against Rovers."
If Harps can start to make home advantage count in games, they will quickly pull away from the other sides at the bottom of the table as seven of their next eleven league games are at Finn Park.
In 2005, both these teams were relegated from the top flight. In the three games between the sides that season, Harps won twice – including a 4-1 victory at Dalymount Park.
The third game between the two sides finished in a 1-1 draw. However, in the First Division the following season, Rovers won three and drew one of the four games between the sides.
24-Jun-05 (Premier Division) Shamrock Rovers 1 Finn Harps 4
17-Sep-05 (Premier Division) Finn Harps 3 Shamrock Rovers 0
29-Apr-06 (First Division) Finn Harps 0 Shamrock Rovers 0
11-Jul-06 (First Division) Shamrock Rovers 2 Finn Harps 0
12-Sep-06 (First Division) Finn Harps 0 Shamrock Rovers 1
10-Nov-06 (First Division) Shamrock Rovers 4 Finn Harps 0
Form guide (last six league games):
Finn Harps: L-L-L-L-L-D (1pts)
Shamrock Rovers: L-L-D-L-L-D (2pts)
Friday's game at Finn Park kicks-off at 8.00pm.