Preview: Bohemians v Drogheda United
October 25, 2012
Bohemians host Drogheda United in a game that can confirm Drogheda’s standing as runners-up or Bohemians’ qualification for the Setanta Sports Cup.
Bohemian manager Aaron Callaghan is delighted that there is something to play for.
“I wouldn’t want it any other way. You don’t really want a meaningless game with nothing at stake,” he said.
“This situation puts a bit of an edge on the game which is always good. I believe there’s a twist in this somewhere and I just hope the twist goes our way.”
Both teams come to Friday’s clash from very good results last weekend. While Drogheda beat newly crowned champions Sligo Rovers 2-1, Bohemians put four past Bray Wanderers.
“We were on top even before they [Bray] had a man sent off. It was one of those games where you feel comfortable and you always feel you’re on top.
“Once we got the first goal I knew we were going to get a few more. Every player rose above their normal level.”
There has been very little between Bohemians and Drogheda in their three matches this season. An EA Sports Cup tie was decided on penalties after two hours of play produced a 1-1 draw.
It was 1-1 again in the league at Dalymount in May and a single Drogheda goal from a penalty settled a feisty encounter at Hunky Dorys Park in August.
Callaghan says his players appreciate the importance of a win on Friday. “Securing a place in the Setanta Cup will be no mean achievement. It’s fantastic to be playing for this, for the staff who put in such an effort, and for the players.”
Callaghan gave a debut last Friday to under-19 player Dylan Connolly who came on as substitute after 75 minutes. The manager may do something similar on Friday, as Bohemians look to a future based on a core of younger players.
But the manager’s options are also limited by injuries among the more experienced players. Injuries rule out Owen Heary (hamstring), Derek Pender (back) and Adam Martin (ankle), as well as Andy Mulligan (ankle), Luke Byrne (ankle) and Michael Barker (illness).
Bohemian fans have been urged to attend this season finale in large numbers to show their appreciation for the players’, managers’ and coaches’ efforts, while Callaghan acknowledged the “tremendous support from everyone involved.”
“We’ve had some highs and some lows but I think, in general, the fans understand the project and that we don’t have a lot of finance to compete with other clubs,” he said.
“They understand that we have had to play a lot of young players and that’s the way it is going to be for the foreseeable future.”