St.Patrick’s Athletic v Bohemians (Premier Division)
The end of the season can’t come soon enough for Bohemian Football Club. Last week’s home defeat to third-from-bottom Drogheda United, a team who had failed to win any of their last five games, was yet another indication that things are broken at Bohemians and the club desperately needs to find some direction. The ongoing search for a new manager has so far, proven to be a disaster with the board’s apparent top targets turning down the gig with the remaining names linked with the position not exactly filling supporters with excitement.
As for St.Patrick’s Athletic, Friday night’s last-gasp win away to European rivals Dundalk was yet another sign of the ruthless mentality the Saints have had in recent months. Tim Clancy’s men have won 6 from 8 since going out of Europe with their only defeat coming against title-chasing Derry City. Such a run of form sees St.Pat’s just one point outside of the automatic European places which makes this Dublin derby against a struggling Bohs side a crucial match.
Pats have won the last two H2H encounters quite comfortably (3-0 & 3-1) and with Bohs totally devoid of any confidence at present, this looks a grand opening for the Super Saints.
HOT STAT: Chris Forrester has scored 4 goals in his last 5 league games (plus 1 assist). The former Peterborough midfielder is 4.5 to score anytime.
Athlone Town v Cork City (Division 1)
Already crowned champions, Cork City will very much be in party mode as they head to Lissywoolen to take on Athlone Town. That could cause the First Division winners some issues, given Athlone are currently enjoying their best run of form of the season with the Westmeath men winning four of their last six and only losing once in that time.
The Midlanders also gave City a real scare at this venue earlier in the season as they went 1-0 up and missed a penalty before Cork City battled back to claim what was probably an undeserved three points thanks to a late long-range strike from Aaron Bolger. Since then, Cork have shown they will no longer underestimate a team like Athlone, as they beat them 6-1 in their next meeting but Athlone have shown an ability to score goals all season long despite their poor league position so this could be entertaining on Friday night.
Despite sitting second from bottom in the division, Athlone have scored more goals than the team directly above and below them and have also out scored 5th placed Treaty United. Cork City meanwhile are the second highest scorers in the league and with both teams scoring in all three H2H encounters this term (15 goals scored in 3 H2H matches) we could be set for an enjoyable end-of-season clash.
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