September 11, 2014
ST PATRICK’S ATHLETIC v BOHEMIANS
FAI Ford Cup quarter-final, Richmond Park, 12 September, 7.45pm
Bohemians face their third away tie in the FAI Ford Cup knowing that, this time, they will have strong support from their fans.
Derbies against St Patrick’s Athletic have often been tight and intense and the fans contribute to that, according to Bohemian manager Owen Heary.
“Every time we play in Inchicore our support is great. When the supporters are together it creates a great atmosphere for the lads,” he said.
“It’s one of the more enjoyable places to play because the crowd is on top of you.
“It will be a difficult game. They are in form themselves, not conceding goals. It’s a big ask for the lads but it’s one that they are all geared towards. When you come to the quarter-final stages, it’s all up for grabs.”
In three matches this season it has been honours even: Bohemians won at Dalymount in the EA Sports Cup, St Pat’s won at Inchicore in the league and the sides drew at Dalymount in their league encounter two months ago.
“For the club, this is massive,” said Heary. “If we get through to the semi-final, it’s extra finance and we can start thinking about getting to Europe, and that would be really massive, not only for the fans.”
Bohemians come to Friday’s game from a 3-2 defeat in Sligo on Monday. But Heary takes comfort from his side’s performance and believes they deserved something from the game.
“We were unfortunate not to get a result. A poor refereeing decision probably cost us getting something from the game,” he said. “We played extremely well, created a lot of chances and we could have scored more.”
Dave Mulcahy and Jason Byrne were rested on Monday and Eoin Wearen served an automatic suspension for his red card the previous Friday.
All three are available for the cup tie and they, along with Dinny Corcoran, Kevin Devaney and Karl Moore, who were on the bench for the first 70 minutes against Sligo, may be starters. Only long-term injuries, Anto Murphy (ankle) and Dan Byrne (cruciate), are ruled out.
The Sligo game was an opportunity for Heary to give game-time to other players whom he expects to call on again before the end of the season. Adam Evans (20) and Jake Hyland (19) made their first starts in the league and Hyland scored, bringing his tally to four goals in four games for the senior team. “Jake’s a good player and he’ll probably get more game-time this season,” said Heary.
Paddy Kavanagh returned to the starting line-up after a spell on the bench and was “excellent”.
Bohemians bring strong cup form and away form to Friday’s derby. They had three wins in the EA Sports Cup before going out, and they have beaten Premier Division opposition twice to get to the FAI Cup quarter-finals.
Bohemians have maintained a positive goal difference in away league matches, a record shared only with the top four in the table. They have had four of their seven league victories on the road.
Improved form in recent weeks is stirring interest in some Bohemian players. “That’s a killer, because we can’t compete with the top teams and we don’t want to be starting fresh again,” said Heary.
“If we do get to a cup final we might have that bit extra to help us keep more players.”