After the disappointment of their Irish Daily Mail FAI Senior Challenge Cup exit against Shelbourne, Waterford FC will be seeking revenge when they take on Owen Heary’s side in the SSE Airtricity League First Division at the RSC on Friday evening. Kick-off is 7.45pm.
Three second half goals from the Tolka Park club in the cup meeting saw the Blues crash out as they suffered a first defeat in all competitions at the RSC but they have responded since that game with a lone goal win over UCD in the league two weeks ago.
Friday will be the fifth meeting of the two clubs this campaign and in their three previous league meetings, the Blues have won once and drawn twice with the league win coming at the RSC back in May thanks to a lone Mark O’Sullivan goal.
Speaking ahead of Friday’s crunch game, Waterford FC defender Kenny Browne said, “It’s a big game and obviously we owe them one after they beat us 3-0 in the cup a couple of weeks ago.
“Anytime that we have played them in the league this season they have been tight games and we have drawn with them twice up in Tolka Park. We’re expecting a tough game and we’re under no illusions that we need the three points.
“The league is far from over as far as we’re concerned so it’s just all about winning Friday. In fairness to Cobh, they got a great result against Shelbourne up there two weeks ago so they are hanging in there and are pushing us all the way.
“It’s all about the three points so if we win Friday it will push us really close to the title then so it’s a matter of getting out there now and getting the three points. We played well against UCD and could have been two or three goals up but then we sat back.
“UCD are a good side but that was a massive win for us. I think it will be a different game against Shelbourne because they are a different side to UCD and play a different way. It’s a massive game on Friday and we need the support again.
“It’s a big weekend for Waterford sport and it would be ideal if we could get the three points in front of our home fans before the big hurling game on Sunday. We know it’s going to be tough and we’ll have to be at our very best.”
Team News: Patrick McClean (shoulder) and Derek Daly (hamstring) are ruled out for the clash through injury while Paddy Barrett and Dean O’Halloran miss out on the game through suspension after picking up five yellow cards. John Martin is available for selection despite his inclusion in the Republic of Ireland Under 19 squad while Kenny Browne is a doubt with a bout of flu.