Third hosts second in the First Division as in-form UCD welcome Drogheda United to the Bowl in Belfield on Friday night (kick-off 7.45pm – live stream on Drogheda’s Youtube).
Andy Myler’s Students have won four of their last five in the league, scoring 19 goals along the way, to shoot into title contention – a win could see them go top.
A 6-0 win away to Cobh Ramblers last Saturday was the ideal response to the surprise midweek defeat at home to Galway United.
Braces from Colm Whelan and Yoyo Mahdy – he now has nine goals in the past five games – added to an own goal and one for Liam Kerrigan saw the Students to victory.
Whelan himself has six in those five games and Myler will hope his front pairing can continue their free-scoring habit to leapfrog the Boynesiders.
UCD have not released team news but they have no suspensions to contend with.
Drogheda arrive in Belfield knowing that three points could see them go top of the table, should Bray Wanderers fail to beat Longford Town.
Tim Clancy’s side have won three of their last five games – the only stumble a surprise defeat away to Cobh Ramblers – and battled back to draw in Longford last week.
Rob Manley had given Longford the lead inside four minutes but half-time sub Jordan Ademayo hit back within six minutes of his introduction.
“It was important we weathered the storm in the first half and stayed in the game because it could be an important point come the next few weeks,” captain Jake Hyland said of the Longford game.
“They are all big games now. There’s no easy games to play but we’re all looking forward to it, a perfect pitch to play on and a good strong side.
“We’ll need to be at our best to get three points.”
Luke Heeney will miss the game with injury, while Jack Tuite and Brandon Bermingham are doubts after sitting out the Longford game.
Referee: Alan Patchell
When the sides met earlier this season, Drogs run out 5-1 winners at United Park thanks to goals from Mark Doyle, Jordan Ademayo, Chris Lyons, Jack Tuite and Sean Brennan.
They had been due to face in the first round of the EA Sports Cup before the competition was voided for the season due to the Covid-19 outbreak.
UCD have taken 12 points from their last five games, scoring 19 goals, while Drogheda have taken ten points from five, scoring ten in the process.
Mahdy and Whelan lead the First Division goalscoring charts with ten and eight goals respectively, with Drogheda’s Mark Doyle one further back on seven.
UCD 21/10; Draw 5/2; Drogheda United evens.
UCD 2 – 1 Drogheda United
Injured: Luke Heeney.
Doubtful: Brandon Bermingham, Jack Tuite.