Finn Harps goalkeeper Ciaran Gallagher comes out to fetch a high ball during the meeting of Finn Harps and Limerick at Finn Park back in May. Photo: Thomas Gallagher INDD 290517 TG10
Having bowed out of the Irish Daily Mail FAI Cup at the second round stage last weekend, Finn Harps have seven games left to save their season.
The Donegal club, after three defeats on the bounce in the league, have slipped back into the relegation zone and with games fast running out, suddenly their task of survival in the top division is all the more difficult.
That said, they can considerably boost their chances of staying up if they could win in Limerick tomorrow night.
The game at Market’s Field is the latest instalment in Ollie Horgan’s quest to avoid the drop. However, with a number of key players likely to be absent, it promises to be another difficult test for Harps.
Last Saturday night, Limerick won the FAI Cup meeting between the sides 1-0, although Harps had Caolan McAleer red-carded in the first half.
The Omagh man, who was back in the side after serving a two-game ban, missed out tomorrow night in what’s the first of a likely three-game ban.
Gareth Harkin is also suspended while Horgan will be without defenders Packie Mailey and Damien McNulty. The latter aggravated a shoulder injury during last Saturday night’s game in Limerick.
“Once again, we’re going into the game without a number of players, so it’s not ideal,” Horgan said yesterday.
“We’ve a few other players in bother too, but we’ll patch them up and get on with it.”
On the plus side, Horgan can welcome Eddie Dsane back into the panel. He has served a two-game ban following his sending off at St. Patrick's Athletic.
Limerick and Harps know each other well having already met three times this season. Harps might have lost the cup battle, but they drew 1-1 away to Limerick in the league back in March and then were very impressive when they beat the Munster outfit 3-2 at Finn Park in May.
Limerick’s league form hasn’t been great of late. They beat Bohs 1-0 in their last league outing but prior to that, they went five games without a win, losing four.
Meanwhile Horgan said Harps are glad to play their part in the charity game organised for Friday, September 8th, against Derry City in Buncrana.
The game, which kicks off at 7.45pm, will be played at Maginn Park and will help raise funds for the victims of the floods in Inishowen.
“Anything we can do to help, we will,” Horgan said.
“I think it’s a fantastic idea and it’s nice that the two clubs are getting together to support this cause.
“Just like Derry, we have supporters who come to watch us from all parts of Inishowen and we know that some of them have been affected by these floods. So we’re only too glad to take part in this game and hopefully people will come out and support this fundraiser.”