An explosive Dublin derby is on the cards when Shelbourne and Bohemians lock horns in the SSE Airtricity Premier Division at Tolka Park on Saturday evening (kick-off 7.30pm).
Shels go into this game hoping to exorcise the demons from last weekend with a much needed home win against their arch rivals Bohs and give themselves some breathing room from the relegation zone.
Shelbourne missed out on the opportunity to reignite their hopes of a European place when they succumbed to a 2-0 defeat to St. Patrick’s Athletic at Richmond Park last Saturday evening.
A thunderbolt from the boot of Chris Forrester after 17 minutes and a headed goal from Rory Feely ten minutes into the second half were enough to give all three points to the Inchicore side and put daylight between themselves and Shelbourne.
The defeat was only Shels second loss in their last seven matches in all competitions having previously lost 3-2 against Dundalk at Oriel Park and drawn against Derry City (1-1), Shamrock Rovers (0-0), Cork City (1-1) and Finn Harps (1-1). Shelbourne only win during this period was a 5-2 win over Galway United in the FAI Cup at Eamonn Deacy Park.
Bohs will make the very short trip to Drumcondra with aspirations of upsetting the hosts by snatching maximum points and closing the gap between themselves and league leaders Shamrock Rovers.
Crucially they can also move ten points clear of third place Waterford in the race for Europe.
Bohemians made it two wins on the trot with a sensational last gasp 2-1 win over Derry City at Dalymount Park last Friday evening. The Gypsies made the worst possible start to the game when James Akintunde found himself free and clipped the ball over James Talbot to send the Candystripes into ecstasy after only two minutes.
Derry City missed a glorious chance to double their lead shortly after but Adam Hammill failed to convert from only six yards out. Bohs struggled to create chances throughout but just when it looked like Derry would take all three points the Gypsies produced a rabbit out of a hat.
Deep into injury time Bohs were awarded a penalty which Keith Ward duly dispatched and then with the last kick of the game Andre Wright broke Derry hearts by lashing home the winner and produce the most unlikely of comebacks.
The win was Bohemians second league win in a row after beating Sligo Rovers 1-0 at the Showgrounds the previous week. The recent run arrested two consecutive defeats having lost 1-0 to Shamrock Rovers at Tallaght Stadium and 2-0 against Waterford at Dalymount Park.
Referee: Robert Harvey
Earlier this season the Gypsies came out 2-0 winners at Dalymount Park back in March thanks to second half goals from Andre Wright and Danny Mandroiu.
Shels and Bohs have met each other 18 times in all competitions since the 2005 season with the Gypsies having the marginally better head to head record with eight wins to Shelbourne’s seven with three draws.
Shelbourne scored 28 goals averaging 1.56 goals per game and Bohemians scored 27 goals averaging 1.5 per game.
Shelbourne are currently in 8th place in the SSE Airtricity Premier Division on 13 points with 3 wins, 4 draws and 6 defeats from their 13 matches. Bohemians are currently in 2nd place in the SSE Airtricity Premier Division on 27 points with 9 wins and 4 defeats from their 13 matches.
Shelbourne 10/3; Draw 23/10; Bohemians 4/5
Shelbourne 2-2 Bohemians