League Preview: Finn Harps -v- UCD

Fri, Jun 15 2018

Credit: Daniel Rico

FINN HARPS

Fourth-in-the-table Harps play host to table-topping UCD at Finn Park on Friday night (kick-off 8pm).

Harps come into this game off the back of a hard-fought 2-1 away win against Galway at Eamon Deacy Park.

Ex-Galway man Jesse Devers opened the scoring in the 11th minute for the away side.

Mark Timlin netted seven minutes into the second half, meaning Conor Barry's 90th minute strike was a mere consultation in the end for the hosts.

The win propelled Ollie Horgan's Harps into fourth spot in the table, ahead of Galway and Longford with 16 games played, and thus into the play-off spots.

Horgan, speaking to his club's official website, outlined how difficult this season's First Division is and challenged his men to be on top of their game at all times.

"It's been a crazy league so far this season with all the unexpected results,” he said.

“But, there is no doubt that it is a much competitive league than it was when we were last in the division in 2015.

"We have had our ups and downs and there will be more of all that as the season progresses."

Horgan is aware of the task of hosting the league leaders on Friday night. He fully respects the threat that the Dublin club poses, especially Donegal native Georgie Kelly.

"They are seven points ahead of us so we very much respect their form but we don't fear them.

"We did play well against them up in Belfield but still lost 3-2. It's going to take a mammoth performance from us to get the better of them.”

 

UCD

Last Friday night, a goal in each half from the talismanic Georgie Kelly meant the Students overcame Tim Clancy’s Drogheda United 2-0 at the UCD Bowl.

The win extended their lead at the top of the table to four points frpm Drogheda themselves, and one would think Collie O’Neill’s men would be favourites to stay there come the end of the season.

UCD are playing great football that is easy on the eye, and the difference between last season and this season, is that this year they seem to possess a winning mentality, coupled with their fluid attacking football.

The Students have won their last two league games, and last tasted defeat against fellow Dublin rivals Cabinteely by two goals to nil at Stradbrook on the 25th May.

A win for the Dublin club up in Donegal, as well as Drogheda dropping points away to fellow promotion-chasing Longford Town, would stretch UCD’s lead by five or seven points.

Therefore, achieving a positive result away to a play-off chasing team would send a message to the other teams that they are not letting up and mean business in their pursuit for promotion.

UCD have failed to provide team news for Friday night’s game.

 

Referee: Damien MacGraith 

 

MATCH STATS

These sides have met each other 16 times competitively. Each side has six wins apiece; while there have been four stalemates.

2.6 goals per game have been scored in those 16 games.

Finn Harps last five league games: WLWDL.

UCD’s last five league games: WWLWL.

 

BETTING

Finn Harps 2/1; Draw 11/5; UCD 6/5

PREDICTION

Finn Harps 1 – 1 UCD

 

Finn Harps

Injured: Adam Duffy, Liam Walsh, Lee Toland.

Doubtful: Mark Coyle, Ciaran O’Connor.

Suspended: None.

 

UCD

Injured: Unknown,

Doubtful: Unknown.

Suspended: None.