Dundalk face tough task against league leaders Sligo

Dundalk, who went out of the EA Sports Cup against Drogheda United on penalties in their quarter-final match on Monday, face Premier Division leaders Sligo Rovers at Oriel Park tonight.

Dundalk, who went out of the EA Sports Cup against Drogheda United on penalties in their quarter-final match on Monday, face Premier Division leaders Sligo Rovers at Oriel Park tonight.

Premier Division leaders Sligo Rovers travel to Oriel Park looking for their first league win since May 18 after a defeat by UCD and a draw with Bohemians followed by an enforced extended break due to Monaghan United’s demise.

Dundalk, who drew with UCD last week, are without their first-choice goalkeeper Ger Hanley who has a broken wrist, but have an able deputy in Peter Cherrie who played heroically in the cup defeat, while youngsters Ben McLaughlin and Bob McKenna are unavailable.

Derek Foran is expected to be fit after sustaining an ankle injury in Monday's game, but Conor McDonnell is a doubt after the same type of injury in the same game.

However, the good news is that Michael Rafter and Stephen McDonnell return from suspension for the Louth side.

Sligo welcomed back Joseph Ndo from injury in midweek but Alan Keane and Jason McGuinness are suspended, while Mark Quigley is a doubt with a calf problem.

Dundalk boss Sean McCaffrey is optimistic ahead of tonight's game.

McCaffrey said: "I am looking forward to playing this match. They are a footballing side and they are top of the league; deservedly so.

"I don’t mind playing Sligo because their style of play suits us, unlike playing Drogheda. It isn’t a physical battle, which is great for us.

"We produced probably our best half of football against Sligo at The Showgrounds in March and I see no reason why we can’t do the same at Oriel Park."

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