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All the latest club news and updates from Dalymount Park.

CALLAGHAN: WE HAVE TO KEEP SUPPORTING THE YOUNG LADS

PREVIEW: BOHEMIANS v BRAY WANDERERS (Friday April 26th, Dalymount Park, 7.45pm)

Manager Aaron Callaghan is looking for a high work-rate from his players and renewed support from the fans as Bohemians look to pick up points after four defeats in five games.

Callaghan’s squad had an intensive and “excellent” training programme this week when the players put in a “nearly full-time” effort.

But in last Friday’s “poor performance”, according to Callaghan, “Dundalk were more efficient and they worked harder – and that was particularly disappointing to me”.

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“Maybe the players were a bit affected by having that game just three days after the trip to Limerick,” added Callaghan.

“The schedule is dictated to us without consultation and now we have another three-day break before the rescheduled match against Pats.”

In training Bohs have identified areas for improvement and talked through the recurring problems with individual errors.

“But we can’t blame players,” insisted Callaghan. “With a young squad you are more likely to have these errors and we have to keep supporting the young lads.”

The manager believes that Bohs fans understand that their team is a “work in progress – and in progress over two or three years” but the players and coaches “know the reality of where we are”.

“We haven’t given the fans a lot to shout about, especially at home. If we don’t put in a shift we can’t call on the fans as a twelfth man,” said Callaghan.

“I am a realist. We have to improve the results and if the system needs tweaking, that’s my responsibility.”

Friday’s game against equally youthful Bray assumes greater importance given Bohs’ recent record “but every game is a must-win”, insisted Callaghan, “whether we’re playing Bray or UCD or Shamrock Rovers”.

In the last ten league matches between the sides Bohemians have lost just once.

Having missed Dave Mulcahy last Friday, due to late withdrawal through illness, Bohemians may have to count without the experienced midfielder again. Dave Scully and Darragh Reynor (both illness) are also unlikely to be fit for selection, while Stephen Traynor is recovering from a medical procedure.

Captain Owen Heary (ankle) also remains sidelined, as he has been for over a month.

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MATCH SPONSOR v BRAY WANDERERS

We are delighted to have 911 Security  on board as match sponsor for Friday’s Airtricity League game against Bray Wanderers (KO 7.45).

A big thank-you to Paul Keegan from 911 for his support; we hope Paul and his guests enjoy the game and the matchday hospitality.

As always, please support our sponsors – visit 911security.ie for more information.

911

BACK IN TUNE

A post-match DJ returns to the Phoenix Bar this Friday after Bohemians’ Airtricity League clash with Bray Wanderers at Dalymount Park (KO 7.45pm).

So make sure to stick around after the game for some good music and some good company!

It’s ninth versus tenth  in what is already being billed as an early-season six-pointer. Win and Bohs are back on the coattails of chasing pack. Lose and Aaron Callaghan’s men could be sucked into the dogfight at the bottom.

After a disappointing run of home results, the Gypsies need YOUR support to help Dalymount become a fortress again, so help boost Friday’s attendance by inviting your friends to the game on Facebook.

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VIDEO: BOHEMIANS 0 DUNDALK 2 POST-MATCH

Bohemians first-team coach Terry Butler gave his post-match reaction to ROBERT O’REARDON after Bohs’ 2-0 defeat to Dundalk on Friday night.

Filmed by Jamie O’Halleron

LILYWHITES GET THE JOB DUN

BOHEMIANS 0 DUNDALK 2

A subdued Bohemians fell to their third consecutive Airtricity League defeat after being put to the sword by Stephen Kenny’s Dundalk at Dalymount Park. Two sloppy, scrappy, stingy goals either side of half time condemned the Gypsies to their fourth defeat in 5 games, and their fourth home game on the spin without scoring, writes KEVIN FAGAN.

Following Tuesday’s disastrous injury time defeat to 10-man Limerick, Aaron Callaghan made two changes to his starting line-up, with Stephen Paisley and Karl Moore replacing Dave Mulcahy and Keith Buckley respectively. Happily for Bohs, striker Chris Lyons took up a spot on the bench to bolster the home side’s attacking options.

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Indeed, attacking options are in desperate need for Bohs. Unfortunately for the home fans, they were treated to another 90 minutes of frustrating action, with the team in red and black struggling to create any clear cut chances. The Lilywhites featured former Bohs men Stephen O’Donnell and Keith Ward in central midfield, and that duo were the dominant force in a classy performance from the visitors, who continued their 100% away record.

After a relatively promising start, Dundalk began to take control after 15 minutes, and took the lead in the 20th. Dean Delany has had what can only be described as a nightmare week. After arguably being at fault for both Limerick goals on Tuesday, he made another error here. Richie Towell’s 30 yard free kick was struck well enough, but the former Shelbourne keeper only parried the shot in front of him. The ball dropped kindly for Tiernan Mulvenna, who had an easy 4 yard finish.

Credit to Delany, he picked himself up, shrugged off the ire from large sections of the Jodi Stand, and made a string of impressive saves. Mulvenna struck a low shot that Delany tipped around the post, and saved well again from John Dillon after the resulting corner. Mulvenna probably should have doubled the visitor’s lead after 35 minutes, but couldn’t connect with Ward’s devilishly whipped free kick.

Half time brought changes for Bohs as Dave Scully and Chris Lyons entered the fray. The isolated Kevin Devaney was hooked along with Shane Murray, and the subs formed a two-man strike force in the second 45. For the first 15 minutes, things looked up, with the lively Lyons latching onto some of Scully’s bustling knock-ons. Still, no real chances fell for Bohs, and you felt the second goal was always going to come.

When it did, it was yet another sloppy goal for Bohs to concede. A Roberto Lopes header was cleared out to Richie Towell, who let fly with a speculative 25 yard effort. The shot would almost certainly have gone wide, but took a wicked deflection off the charging Lopes, and wrong-footed Delany to seal the deal for Dundalk.

The last ten minutes were as frustrating as the first 80. Set-piece delivery was simply awful all night, with long range free kicks being floated out of play or failing to beat the first man on more than one occasion. When chances are few and far between, set pieces need to yield better results. Bohs have a full week to prepare for what becomes a crunch clash with Bray Wanderers in a week’s time.

Worryingly for Bohs, they now have an identical record to last season – 7 points from the opening 8 games. Given this season’s squad have had a much more settled pre-season, the home fans will be hoping for a repeat of the last term’s mid-season kick-on in the coming weeks.

Bohemians: Dean Delany, Derek Pender, Roberto Lopes, Stephen Paisley, Luke Byrne; Ciaran Nangle, Shane Murray (Dave Scully ’46), Michael Barker, Ryan McEvoy (Conor O’Brien ’75), Karl Moore; Kevin Devaney (Chris Lyons ’46). Subs not used: Keith Buckley, Michael Scott, Greg Murray, Shane Fitzgerald. 

Dundalk: Peter Cherrie; John Sullivan, Andy Boyle, Mark Rossiter, Dane Massey; John Dillon, Richard Towell, Stephen O’Donnell, Keith Ward (John Mountney ’64); Tiarnan Mulvenna (Darren Meenan ’70), Vinny Faherty (Pat Hoban ’80). Subs not used: Kurtis Byrne, Stephen McDonnell, Sami Osobi,  Aaron Shanahan.

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THE WEEKENDER: APRIL 19

BETTING COLUMN BY SEAMUS O’CONCHUR

There are arguably two games worthy of being televised this weekend, With Derry City hosting Shamrock Rovers and St Pat’s welcoming runaway leaders Sligo Rovers. While the league table is to a certain extent looking a lot like people would have expected pre-season, it may be that with fixtures piling up for some teams, we may start to see more draws and less teams pulling away at the top or being left adrift at the bottom so early.

Tommy Dunne is protesting around the amount of travelling his team are doing but he would rather be in the Setanta Cup than not in it, and he has proved capable of maintaining his squad’s conditioning, winning 2 games and taking 9 points from the first 7 games.

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Tonight Cork face a Shelbourne team who sit at the bottom of the table, level with UCD on one solitary point. These are the only 2 teams Bohs have beaten this season and having seen both sides, there probably isn’t a huge gap between them and ourselves. With that in mind, and the fact that Cork played in Tallaght on Monday, it might be time to back Shels to get something from this trip. The one point Shels have this season came against Shamrock Rovers where they were able to dig in for a draw, so maybe they can look to repeat that tonight down by the Lee. The draw is

Back to matters at the top now, and just how serious a title tilt are Shamrock Rovers going to have this season? They lave left a lot to do, but a win for them tonight in Derry coupled with defeat for Sligo in Inchicore would cut the deficit to nine points – still something of a mountain to climb. For all their draws this season, Shamrock have the longest unbeaten run of any team in the league, but the prices look correct for their trek to Derry, where the home side is marginal favourite. This of course wouldn’t have been the case at the start of the season but people have had their views challenged by Rovers inability to kill games until last week’s win against Bray.

Although it would throw the title race wide open, and Sligo’s defeat in Drogheda proves they’re beatable, a home win in Inchicore is difficult to back. Pat’s have an inferior squad to Sligo and need every player in top form to be able to turn them over. Again nothing stands out at the prices. It will probably be a low-scoring game, and if there is a winner it could be by one goal perhaps in the final quarter of the game where quality players on either side could take advantage of a defensive slip.

The Drogheda v UCD game looks a fairly straightforward home win but UCD ran Cork close and Drogheda aren’t yet the sort of team we’d be comfortable tipping up at odds shorter than 1.5. They will have their appeal to some on the handicap markets, but this isn’t a sure thing either. UCD may keep this tighter than people think, for longer than people think.

Moving onto our own game, there are always reasons to take note of recent trends, and there are also reasons why we sometimes want to ignore recent trends. Our home games this season, in terms of total goals, have been 3,0,3,4. Dundalk’s last 8 away games have seen over 2.5 goals so perhaps this is the bet for tonight’s game. 2/1 the home win might see some interest but this goals bet is a better one. Losing Feely and McMillan to transfers, and Heary to injury means that we are not remotely the same team defensively as we were last season, and Dundalk have the tools to score at Dalymount. With Lyons back though, we should score as well.

Bray and Limerick complete the weekend’s fixtures on Sunday and there is nothing worth getting involved in here.

Recommended:
Cork City v Shelbourne draw, 1pt 4.24 (Pinnacle)
Bohs v Dundalk over 2.5 goals, 1pt 2.38 (Hills)

WKNDR

DERBY COUNTY TO KICK OFF PRE-SEASON AT DALYMOUNT

Bohemian FC is pleased to announce that Derby County will play Bohemians in a friendly at Dalymount Park on Saturday 13th July.

This fixture was confirmed today (19th April) as the first game in Derby County’s pre-season schedule for the 2013-14 season.

The Rams, managed by Nigel Clough, are currently mid-table in the English League Championship with five matches to play.

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Their squad includes five players who have represented Republic of Ireland at under-21 level: goalkeeper Saul Deeney, defenders Richard Keogh (club vice-captain) and Mark O’Brien, and midfielder Jeff Hendrick and forward Conor Sammon (pictured), who both recently made their first full international appearances.

Details on ticket sales for this match will follow.

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CALLAGHAN: THIS IS A RESULTS INDUSTRY BUT I JUDGE OUR GAMES ON THE PERFORMANCES

PREVIEW: BOHEMIANS v DUNDALK (Friday April 19th, KO7.45pm)

Bohemians come to Friday’s game against Dundalk looking to make amends for an injury-time defeat to Limerick on Tuesday.

After that game, “it was tough to be in the dressing room”, said manager Aaron Callaghan. “The lads know themselves they should have got something out of the game.”

Despite three defeats in four games Callaghan is encouraged by the individual and team performances.

“I know this is a results-based industry. But I judge our games on the performances. I believe if you get the performances right, by and large the results will follow,” he said. “There’s nothing that a couple of wins can’t sort out.”

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“The lads are working really hard in training and we’re trying to address those issues of concentration and communication,” he continued. If Bohs cannot get on a winning run “it won’t be for lack of effort”.

There were lots of positives in the team’s display on Tuesday, insisted Callaghan. Midfielder Shane Murray in his first league start was “brilliant” and he is “a fantastic prospect”.

Striker Kevin O’Leary was brought on late, and “we thought he might nick it for us”. He had scored a hat-trick in an earlier friendly against Irish Universities, and is showing promise and an eye for goal.

“I thought we dominated that game and were much the better side but sometimes the lie of the land just isn’t with you. It’s a cruel game. We were pegged back with another goal of the season contender [as with the first goal of the game against Derry City],” said Callaghan.

With Michael Barker and Shane Murray in for David Mulcahy and Stephen Paisley, the team’s average age dropped and youthful inexperience was a factor in the final outcome.

Callaghan and his coaching team, including a psychologist, will be giving more attention to the mental aspects of the game as they seek to eliminate the costly errors, but also to ensure the goal-scoring opportunities are taken.

“Seventy per cent of the game can be in your mind, and we have to address that,” said Callaghan. “One good thing about Tuesday’s game was that we probably had more chances than in any other this season. We changed the system a little to get more players forward, and I felt it worked.”

There may be some personnel changes for Friday as Chris Lyons (ankle) returns from a month-long lay-off, perhaps taking a place on the bench. Captain Owen Heary (knee injury) remains out.

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ALL TWO EASY FOR 10-MAN LIMERICK

LIMERICK 2 BOHEMIANS 1

A last-gasp header from David O’Leary gave 10-man Limerick a 2-1 win over Bohemians in Thomond park last night, writes ROBERT O’REARDON.

Ryan McEvoy had given the Gypsies the lead from the penalty spot on 56 minutes after Keith Buckley was fouled by Patrick Nzuzi, which also resulted in a red card for the left-back.

But it all turned sour five minutes later as Shane Treacy caught out Dean Delany at his near post with a free-kick before O’Leary pounced on another goalkeeping error to hand all three points to his side in stoppage time.

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Aaron Callaghan’s side should have taken the lead right the beginning when Kevin Devaney was presented with a great opportunity after a mix-up in the Limerick defence between Aaron Brown and goalkeeper Barry Ryan. But the 22-year-old, who usually keeps his composure in front of goal, couldn’t do so this time.

Despite that setback, Bohs began to dominate the game and it was Shane Murray who was looking the most impressive in the centre of the park. A darting run and a superb ball to the back post from the Arklow man should have found Devaney but once again the former Finn Harps and Sligo player failed to convert as the ball just evaded him.

After a pretty uneventful first half, the game sprung into life in the second. Limerick began to get on the front foot and a powerful shot from Daniel Galbraith tested Dean Delany but the Bohs No 1 held on.

Then, Bohemians struck the first blow. A diagonal ball found its way to Buckley. The No 7 was getting ready to shoot when he was tumbled over from behind. Alan Kelly was left with no option to point to the spot and show Nzuzi a red card. McEvoy stepped up and side-footed the ball past Ryan in the Limerick goal.

Bohs seemed to be in the ascendancy but five minutes after taking the lead, Shane Treacy stepped up and fired a free-kick past Delany. It beat him at his near post; the ex-Shelbourne stopper really should have done better. After this, the home side began to take control, despite Callaghan introducing Dave Scully and Kevin O’Leary into the fold.

Limerick had numerous chances to win it before they finally sealed the deal as Bohs seemed to run out of ideas playing against 10 ten men. Brown wasted a golden opportunity after he fired wide from a Treacy cross but, against the run of play,  Scully should have been the Bohs supersub when he found himself in on goal, but he blasted over the bar.

That was the last chance for the Gypsies as Treacy delivered a ball into the six-yard box. Delany opted to stay on his line and for the second time of the match, his poor positioning proved costly as David O’Leary was left with the easiest of headers to nod to back of the net as the home crowd erupted.

Limerick FC: Barry Ryan; Shaun Kelly, Aaron Brown, Stephen Folan, Patrick Nzuzi; Shane Tracy, Stephen Bradley, David O’Leary; Axel Bossekota (Rory Gaffney 66), Craig Curran, Danny Galbraith. Subs not used: Shane Cusack, Shane Costelloe, Val Feeney, Pat Purcell, Steven McGann, Darragh Rainsford.

Bohemians: Dean Delany; Michael Barker, Roberto Lopes, Derek Pender, Luke Byrne; Keith Buckley (Karl Moore 86), Dave Mulcahy, Ryan McEvoy, Shane Murray (Dave Scully 69) Ciaran Nangle; Kevin Devaney (Kevin O’Leary 78). Subs not used: Greg Murray, Conor O’Brien, Stephen Paisley, Dwayne Wilson.

Referee: Alan Kelly.

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CALLAGHAN: WE NEED TO KEEP OUR CONCENTRATION

PREVIEW: LIMERICK v BOHEMIANS (Tuesday April 16, Thomond Park, 7.45pm)

Bohemians face their nearest rivals in the league table when they play Limerick FC at Thomond Park on Tuesday.

This first match in 11 days starts an intensive round of games for Bohemians, with seven over the next 24 days.

Manager Aaron Callaghan is apprehensive about the impact on the players of matches following each other so closely. “I never got a call on the scheduling. The matches just seem to be arranged and there’s no discussion.

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“But we’ve got to go and we’ve got to play. We’ll just have to call on the full squad if necessary.”

Callaghan’s squad had a friendly against Irish Universities since their last league game. “It was a good competitive game and we won it very well, plus we got a full game for a lot of lads who haven’t played for a while.”

The squad have also worked hard on correcting what caused the home defeats by Sligo Rovers and Derry City. “We played well in those games for long periods, passing the ball well,” said Callaghan. “But it’s keeping the concentration that matters. A few key moments have cost us.”

The Bohemian manager notes that Limerick’s form has been similar to his own team’s, dropping points by narrow margins.

“They have been getting a lot of draws, and they came back with a late goal in their last match.

“They seem to be finding their way in this league but they’ve brought in some experienced players and they carry goal-scoring threats. We will need to be at our best to get a result.”

Bohemians will be without striker Chris Lyons (ankle) and captain Owen Heary (knee) on Tuesday, though Lyons may make it back for the following game.

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