September 29, 2014
ST PATRICK’S ATHLETIC v BOHEMIANS
SSE Airtricity League Premier Division, Richmond Park, Tuesday 30th September, 7.45pm
Starting with Tuesday’s Dublin derby at Richmond Park, Owen Heary is targeting four big results against four teams currently ahead of his side as he bids to secure a top-half finish in his first full season in charge of Bohemians.
“One of the best things about us at the moment is that we have no fear,” he said. “We’re not in any danger of relegation, so the lads are able to get to grips with games.
“It’s all to play for. We’ve four games left against four teams ahead of us (Pat’s, Sligo, Cork and Derry). None of them are going to be easy but we want to prove ourselves against those sides and get as high a position as we can.”
Heary believes his side are gathering momentum after two positive results last week. “Even though the Shamrock Rovers game (1-1, Tuesday) was a big derby, in many ways the game against Limerick was more important for us,” he said.
“Beating Limerick (2-0, Friday) puts us four points clear of them in seventh. If we were to beat Pat’s, that would leave us level on points with Sligo Rovers who are in fifth and come to Dalymount next week.”
St Pat’s are familiar opposition for Bohs this season. As well as the two previous league encounters, the sides also faced off in both the EA Sports Cup and Ford FAI Cup.
Bohs’ only victory in those four meetings came in the EA Sports Cup (3-2) in May but Heary’s men can feel unlucky not to have won the drawn league game at Dalymount in July (1-1) and not to have forced a replay in the Ford FAI Cup quarter-final at Richmond Park earlier this month (2-3).
“Bar the first league game at Richmond in April (1-3), we’ve always given them a game,” he said. “We threw everything at them in the Cup game. We were very disappointed to come out with nothing having been in touching distance of bringing them to a replay.”
The date for this game was brought forward to Tuesday due to St Pat’s Ford FAI Cup semi-final against Finn Harps this Sunday in a competition they have not won since 1961.
Even though the defending league champions are all but out of the title race and have a massive Cup tie looming, Heary is not expecting the game to be any easier.
“We can’t be worrying about what Pat’s are thinking. We have to do our own job,” he said.
Younger members of the Bohs squad have come in for much praise this season, but it was the experienced trio of Jason Byrne (36), Dave Mulcahy (36) and Anto Murphy (32) that provided the talking points after the win against Limerick.
Byrne and Mulcahy grabbed the goals, while Murphy returned after seven weeks out with an ankle injury.
Heary added: “It was great to have Anto back. In the last few minutes, we were able to throw him on to get some game-time to get his sharpness and awareness back up.
“He had a tough tackle put in on him too, so that was a good test. He’s back sooner than we expected but you could see he was exhausted after five minutes.
“Jayo came up trumps with a lovely little dink and Muller, who was unlucky not to score against Rovers too, had a good finish to allow us to see out the game easily enough in the end.”
Paddy Kavanagh (personal commitments) returns to the squad, but Jason Byrne (knee) and Eoin Wearen (foot) are minor doubts. Kevin Devaney (toe) and Dano Byrne (cruciate) remain sidelined.
Pic by Eddie Lennon: eddielennonsportingimages.com