League Preview: Shelbourne -v- Drogheda United

Fri, Jun 14 2019

There was fireworks the last time both teams met at Tolka Park Credit: Paul Dolan (ETPhotos)


The two in form teams in the First Division face each as top of the table Shelbourne host third placed Drogheda United at Tolka Park on Friday (kick-off is at 7.45pm).

Three 1-0 wins against Cobh, Longford and Bray, following on from 2-1 wins over Athlone and Wexford has seen Shelbourne record five wins in a row. Ian Morris side now sit top of the table, a point ahead of Longford and two clear of Drogheda.

The first game between these sides this season ended in a 0-0 draw at United Park.

James English went closest to breaking the deadlock in that encounter but saw his close-range header saved by Paul Skinner before Sean Quinn missed the follow up chance.

Shelbourne manager Morris is aware of Drogheda’s attacking threat and has called on the home crowd to get behind the players.

“We want it to be intimidating for the opposition, you can’t put into words how it affects them and drives us on, we want the size of the crowd to keep growing.

“You have to respect everyone, and Drogheda are just a couple of points behind us so we have to be wary of them, they’ve got good attacking players scoring goals so we’ll have prepared for their threats.

“There’s a lot more in us, I don’t think we’ve hit where we can and when that happens we can punish teams, we’ve been creating a lot of chances and it’s about finishing them,” Ian Morris told the club’s official website.

In team news, Morris will have to plan without the injured duo of Dan Byrne and John Ross Wilson but Ciaran Kilduff is again available following illness.


Like Shelbourne, Drogheda also come into this game off the back of five wins in a row in the league.

Since losing 1-0 at home to Longford, the Boynesiders have beat Limerick, Cabinteely, Galway, Wexford and Athlone Town.

Last week saw Drogheda take a 3-0 lead into half time against Athlone thanks to goals from Sean Brennan, Chris Lyons and Luke Heeney.

However, Athlone hit back in the second half thanks to Evan Pierce capitalising on a defensive mistake and Kaleem Simon's long-range strike before James Clarke got a fourth to put the game to bed for Drogheda late on.

Drogheda will again be without the injured duo of Mark Doyle and Adam Wixted while Stephen Meaney and Paul Skinner are both again doubtful. However, captain Jake Hyland is expected to be available.

The club confirmed following the Athlone game that forward Thomas Byrne has left the club, saying that it was decided it was “in the best interests of both parties for the player to part company with the club”.

Referee: Andrew Mullally.



Drogheda and Shelbourne are the two highest goalscorers in the First Division. Drogheda have scored 35 times in 16 games while Shelbourne have found the net 24 times in the same amount of games.

Shelbourne have won seven and lost just one of their eight home games at Tolka Park so far this season, scoring 15 and conceding 4.

Drogheda's away form has seen them win five, draw one and lose two of their eight away games so far this season, scoring 18 and conceding 11.



Shelbourne EVS; Draw 11/5; Drogheda United 12/5.



Shelbourne 1-1 Drogheda United



Injured: Dan Byrne, John Ross Wilson.

Doubtful: None.

Suspended: None.


Drogheda United

Injured: Adam Wixted, Mark Doyle.

Doubtful: Paul Skinner, Stephen Meaney.

Suspended: None.