Drumkeen United stalwart Tom Bonner says the club’s players and supporters will relish the chance to line out against Premier Division kingpins Bohemians after the sides were paired together in Monday night’s FAI Senior Cup second round draw.
The Ulster Senior League club will travel to Dalymount to play Bohemians - with the tie likely to take place on Friday night, May 25th. Bonner insists Drumkeen are more than happy with the draw - and they’re now looking forward to what promises to be a night to savour.
“It will be a brilliant experience for everyone involved,” Bonner said. “We wanted someone like Bohs, Harps, Derry or Sligo Rovers. It would have been nicer to play them at home, but we’re happy enough.”
Monday night’s cup draw saw three Donegal clubs in the hat with Finn Harps drawn away to Derry City and Kildrum Tigers paired at home to another Intermediate club in Avondale United from Cork.
Kildrum will be content to have home advantage and in the coming weeks, various improvements, including the erection of a perimeter fence, will be carried out at Station Road ahead of the tie. The game is likely to be played on Sunday, May 27th and before that Avondale have the small matter of contesting this year’s FAI Intermediate Cup final on Sunday week.
The two clubs have met before in St Johnston - Avondale winning 1-0 in the semi final of the Intermediate Cup in 2007.
Like Drumkeen, Kildrum got through to the FAI Senior Cup by virtue of reaching the last 16 of the Intermediate Cup (they lost 2-1 away to College Corinthians of Cork in that round).
Kildrum also had home advantage in the FAI Senior Cup first round and a Cormac Carlin goal was enough to give them a 1-0 win over Clonmel Celtic.
North West derby
Finn Harps director of football Felix Healy will take his side back to the club with whom he won an FAI Cup both as a player and manager. The north-west derby, which is expected to be played on Friday, May 25, is sure to attract a big crowd to Brandywell.
“Derry have a proud tradition in the cup and no doubt, they will hope to put another decent run together in the competition this year,” he said. “From our perspective, it’s a better draw than having to travel to somewhere like Cork or Waterford.
“I know our chairman would love us to get a draw and ensure a decent gate at Finn Park in the replay. It’s not going to be easy. We’ve lost 4-0 there already this season but even the Derry lads will tell you they weren’t four goals better than us that day.”
Meanwhile Tom Bonner and some of his fellow committee members in Drumkeen will travel up to Dublin next week to discuss the arrangements ahead of their trip to play Bohemians. He says there’s likely to be a large number of supporters interested in travelling up for the game.
“The good thing is, Dalymount Park is on the right side of Dublin for us and it’s only just over three hours up the road,” he said. “We’ll be organising at least one supporters’ bus anyway. It should be a great occasion. We’re not going to be expected to get a result - but for the players and everyone involved, it’s a chance to enjoy the experience.”