Preview: Bohemians v Drogheda United

Bohemians v Dundalk - SSE Airtricity Men's Premier Division

Bohemians v Drogheda United
SSE Airtricity Men’s Premier Division
Friday April 19 2024, Dalymount Park, 7.45pm

Alan Reynolds has called on Bohemians fans to give his side the encouragement they need to make it three wins in a row.

Bohs made it two wins in a row for the first time this season when they followed up last week’s 2-1 victory away to Shelbourne by coming out on the right side of a 1-0 scoreline at home to Dundalk on Monday night.

Tomorrow, they face another Louth side at home when Drogheda United are the visitors to Dalymount Park.

Reynolds said: “We want to build on a positive week, make it three out of three, keep the momentum going and try to go on a run.

“There is always a great sense of occasion and great atmosphere at games at Dalymount Park, and we want to send our home fans happy.

“But there is expectation when you play at home at Dalymount Park too, and with that expectation comes pressure on the players. I think the players felt that even more so this season because there was an up and down start.

“They don’t want to let the fans down but we know too that we are still a work in progress, and I think our supporters know that too.

“That means we need patience during games and, most importantly, all the encouragement from fans that we can get because when they get behind us, and really encourage our players, it builds their confidence and is something that spurs them on.

“There is a positivity among the players now after two wins on the bounce and we need everyone, fans and players, to pull in the same direction to build on that.”

Those two wins propelled Bohs up to third place but Reynolds says Bohs are still looking over their shoulder as much as they are at those teams currently ahead of them in the table.

Drogheda have already beaten Bohs this season – in Declan Devine’s penultimate game in charge – and Reynolds knows his side will have to dig deep once more to beat Kevin Doherty’s men.

He said: “We’ve seen now what a couple of wins can do in terms of moving up the table but we know too what a couple of defeats can do in dragging you back down again.

“We are conscious of both ends, and it is so early in the season. All we can do is take it game by game and do everything we can to win.

“We kept a clean sheet on Monday and that gave us a platform to build on. That has to be your starting point – being hard to beat – and we will get better attacking as we go. But first and foremost, we have to be hard to beat.”

Injuries, suspension and a congested fixture list have forced Reynolds’ hand somewhat when it comes to picking his starting XI.

He made six changes for Monday’s win, but was glad of the opportunity to change things around and assess the depth of his squad.

Reynolds added: “It gave me a chance to see more of what we’ve got, and what they can do. I need to see everybody.

“I got to see Filip Piszczek play for the first time. He has only been back training a few days but we threw him in and he did well. He is a handful and I believe he will get better as he gets more games under his belt.

“James Akintunde has done exceptionally well up front in recent weeks, and came off the bench to score on Monday, but we need those options. I always thought that the lads on the bench would play a big role, and come on and affect the game. James, Declan McDaid and others did very well when they came on.

“With three games in a week, there will obviously be changes around again. Obviously Jordan Flores returns from suspension, and he is a big player for us. It’s up to everyone to take their opportunity to impress when they get it.”

Team news

Jordan Flores returns from suspension. Keith Buckley and Rob Cornwall remain out.

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