League Preview: Longford Town -v- Derry City

by Andrew Dempsey

LONGFORD TOWN

Longford Town host Derry City in what must surely be a do-or-die clash in their quest for top-flight survival on Saturday evening (kick-off is at 7.30pm).

De Town come into the game fresh off the back of a convincing 5-0 win over Leinster Senior League side Bangor GG.

Town won the game with five different players getting on the scoresheet, with loanees Darragh Nugent and Dean Williams both netting.

But despite the win, Aaron O’Driscoll realises the importance of Saturday’s game.

“We have to have our heads on for Derry,” Town defender O’Driscoll said. “It’s a massive game.

“Everyone is responsible. We need to stick together for the next half of the season and maybe get a cup run.”

Dean Byrne is Longford’s only absentee on Saturday night an ankle injury.

DERRY CITY

After securing a place in the next round of the FAI Cup, Derry City take on Longford Town at Bishopsgate in a repeat of their clash in the Midlands earlier this season.

Derry were seen off 2-0, with the game proving to be the beginning of the end for former boss Declan Devine.

Longford have not won in the league since then, but Ruaidhri Higgins is expecting a tough test for his side on the banks of the Shannon.

“They’re definitely improving that’s for sure” he said. “Their last three games have seen them draw with Drogheda and Bohs as well as an emphatic win in the cup.

“They’ve also added Williams and Nugent on loan from Rovers in recent weeks, so I’m expecting a difficult night.

“As always our mindset will be to go out and try to win the match. We have to be positive and get on the front foot and that’s what we’ll look to do.

“I’m very happy with the business we’ve done in this window and all three players we’ve brought in- Jamie McGonigle, Junior and Bastien Hery are in the squad for Saturday.”

In terms of team news Ciaron Harkin is suspended but Jack Malone is back after his one match ban at Drogheda last week. Marc Walsh remains side-lined with a hamstring injury.

Referee: John McLoughlin.

 

BETTING

Longford Town 3/1; Draw 9/4; Derry City 5/6.

PREDICTION

Longford Town 2 - 1 Derry City

 

Longford Town

Injured: Dean Byrne.

Doubtful: None.

Suspended: None.

 

Derry City

Injured: Marc Walsh.

Doubtful: None.

Suspended: Ciaron Harkin.