Cobh Ramblers v Shamrock Rovers
The First Division promotion race has gone right down to the wire and St Colman’s Park will be one of five venues hosting ‘Super Tuesday’ matches to decide both the league winners, and the play-off standings.
Ramblers entertain ninth placed Shamrock Rovers II in a must win tie for the Rams, and three points would secure a play-off spot if neither Cabinteely nor Galway win their respective games on the night. Galway host third placed UCD while Cabinteely welcome league leaders Drogheda United to Stradbrook. Longford could also get drawn into the proceedings if they suffer defeat in Wexford. A draw or a loss for Ramblers would not be enough regardless of other results as Cobh aim for a first play-off appearance since 2016.
These sides have met once before this season, when a Conor Drinan goal was enough to secure a 1-0 away win in Tallaght back in September. Ramblers come into this deciding fixture on the back of a hard-fought 1-0 win in Longford, while Rovers had a 3-1 win against Athlone in their previous fixture. The make-up of the Hoops squad has varied highly this year given the nature of a reserve side but the likes of Brandon Kavanagh, Thomas Oluwa and Aaron Bolger will be players to watch out for if involved.
Manager Stuart Ashton hopes to have all his squad available given the magnitude of the game. The fitness of Dave Hurley, Cathal Crowley and Darragh Crowley will be determined closer to kick-off, with the trio hoping to shake off knocks and play their part on Tuesday night.
Speaking to the press this week, Ashton spoke of how his team are focusing on their own games, and how exciting the division has been in 2020,
“We all know what’s at stake. The mood in the camp is good following our last few performances. Hopefully we can take that into this game and get the result that we need. For the last few weeks it’s been about ourselves first and foremost, and see where that took us. There was never a point in looking at other results if we didn’t do our own job and that hasn’t changed. There are lots of permutations so hopefully some of those fall our way and we’ll see where that takes us.
“Rovers have come into the league, for me for the right reasons, blooding young lads at the highest level. They’re playing good football and learning their trade. Possession wise and technically they are a very good side, we’ve seen that. We’re in for a tough tie and we know that, but if the lads show what they have in the last few weeks then we back ourselves to get results.
“It’s been an extra-ordinary season for the First Division, with the pandemic and then the restart. To have the title race going down to the wire, the play-offs going right to the final night, it’s great for the league. The interest is still there and teams haven’t fallen away which is brilliant for all the clubs involved.”
Due to Covid-19 restrictions the game on Tuesday will take place behind closed doors. It will be streamed live by Relivvit, with full coverage available here from 19:30 ahead of kick-off at 19:45.
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Come on the Rams!
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