“Character is massive in sport and the boys are made of the right stuff”

Dundalk v Bohemians - SSE Airtricity League Premier Division

Preview: Bohemians v Finn Harps
SSE Airtricity League
Saturday October 24 2020, Dalymount, 7.30pm

Bohemians go into their final home league game of the season in fine form and up against a club who have not won at Dalymount Park in 21 years.

But manager Keith Long has warned his second-placed side to expect a battle against Ollie Horgan’s Finn Harps, who are currently battling for every point at the opposite end of the table.

Long said: “Ollie and his backroom team have been in this position several times over recent years and they are past masters in the art of avoiding the drop.

“Harps are always well organised and have some very good players in their ranks that can cause any team problems. Games between us have by and large been close affairs and tonight we expect a tough challenge as we always do against a committed and motivated team.”

Bohs’ run of three wins on the trot came to a halt with a 0-0 draw away to Dundalk last week. The Gypsies had good chances to score and the fact they left the home of last year’s champions feeling a little disappointed with a draw indicates how far the team has come.

Long said: “I felt we had the better of the chances in the first half most notably Andre Ward’s chance after four minutes when the ball came to him too quick to sort out his feet in the box.

“We also played some good attacking football particularly on the break and looked dangerous going forward. We came close to scoring through Keith Ward in the second half also.

“But we had to be content with an away draw which is saying something as our trips to Oriel in recent years have always proved difficult and getting anything up there is a real achievement.

“It was an achievement also for our squad and the mentality of the players to have the belief despite the disruptions we faced during the week and on the day of the game.

“I have to single out Michael Barker and Paddy Kirk for special mention. Both players were outstanding in Dundalk despite playing out of position at centre-back.

“They have had to be patient watching the team do well from the sides. Their attitude to training has never wained and they showed that hard work pays off with two brilliant displays.

“Character is massive in sport and the boys are made of the right stuff coming into the team and leading from the back. It speaks volumes for them as individuals and the type of men they are.”

TEAM NEWS

Bohemians are without Rob Cornwall (ankle) but Dan Casey (head) returns as does one player previously ruled out as a result of testing positive for Covid-19 and another who was self-isolating having been deemed a close contact.

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