Shamrock Rovers and Bohemians have opted not to appeal sanctions issued by the FAI against both clubs following the ugly crowd violence which marred last Friday’s Dublin derby.
The FAI did not release details of the penalties imposed but it is understood Rovers were fined €350 while Bohs received what a club source described as a “reasonably substantial four-figure fine which we can ill afford”.
Speaking before yesterday’s FAI statement, Cork City manager John Caulfield said points deductions, not fines, are the way to prevent such incidents recurring. “To me if you’re serious, you deduct points off the teams and then teams will say ‘we can’t afford (to lose) these points’,” he said.
Meanwhile, Dundalk have suffered a major long-term injury blow as they prepare for an away game against Rovers tonight, with confirmation that Ciaran Kilduff has fractured vertebrae in his back.
The striker sustained the injury during the EA Sports Cup defeat to St Patrick’s Athletic on Monday, leaving manager Stephen Kenny bemoaning the consequences for the player and the team.
“It is a big disappointment for us to lose Ciaran,” he said. “The scan has presented a complex injury. He has to wear a back brace for the next six weeks and he is facing several months out. It’s a real kick in the teeth for Ciaran.”
Fourth-placed Shamrock Rovers host the champions and league leaders on the back of that morale-boosting 4-0 win over Bohemians. Defender David O’Connor missed out on the game at Dalymount with a hamstring problem and will again be absent for this evening’s match in Tallaght, which will be screened live on RTÉ Two. Luke Byrne and Stephen McPhail return to the Hoops squad after spells out.
Cork City tonight host Finn Harps at Turner’s Cross.
Caulfield said: “We need to get a win. We have drawn three games, which were all games that were winnable. We have created chances in some of those but have not taken them. I believe there is massive potential in this team and tremendous ability, but we have hit a bit of a blip where we have struggled to score goals.”
Cork have doubts over the availability of Michael McSweeney, Mark O’Sullivan, and John Dunleavy, who are all carrying knocks.
For their part, Harps have a mounting injury crisis, with Barry Molloy, Josh Mailey, Keith Cowan, Tommy McMonagle, Adam Hanlon, and Michael Rafter all confirmed absentees, while Dave Scully and Kevin McHugh are carrying knocks.
In tonight’s other Premier Division games, Derry City host Bohemians and Wexford Youths are at home to Galway United.
In the First Division, it’s Athlone Town v Cabinteely; UCD v Limerick; and Waterford United v Drogheda United.
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