Gaffney set for Rovers’ debut as Burke out

Shamrock Rovers’ prolific goalscorer Graham Burke is to miss Friday’s date with Dundalk but Stephen Bradley will unleash new recruit Rory Gaffney on the titleholders.

Gaffney set for Rovers’ debut as Burke out

Shamrock Rovers’ prolific goalscorer Graham Burke is to miss Friday’s date with Dundalk but Stephen Bradley will unleash new recruit Rory Gaffney on the titleholders.

Burke grabbed five in Friday’s 6-0 demolition of Cork City but missed Monday’s 2-0 victory in Waterford due to a calf injury.

Bradley has confirmed the Ireland international, on loan from Preston North End, will be sidelined for another fortnight. Dundalk have won five of the last six titles but Rovers denied them a second successive double in November by lifting the FAI Cup following a penalty shoot-out victory.

Both sides have started the campaign with an impeccable streak of three straight victories, setting up a tantalising tie at Tallaght.

Former Limerick striker Gaffney, signed from Salford City over the weekend, could come straight in to replace Burke as Rovers’ sole striker.

“Rory will definitely be involved against Dundalk, be it off the bench or a certain number of minutes from the start,” said Bradley.

“Having not played much recently, Rory wouldn’t have the match sharpness of the other lads but he’s quick, strong, and scores goals.”

Ahead of what promises to be a 7,200 sell-out, Bradley played down the fact Rovers haven’t beaten their familiar foes in Tallaght for almost three years. “There’s been very little between Dundalk and Rovers in recent years. We’ll be ready on Friday.”

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