The 2014 SSE Airtricity League season begins tonight with four Premier Division games.
The 2013 champions St Patrick’s Athletic start the season where they finished last season’s campaign, away to Cork City at Turner’s Cross, where a large crowd is expected for John Caulfield’s first league game in charge of the home side.
St Pat’s have already claimed the first trophy of the season after beating Sligo Rovers last Sunday to win the inaugural President’s Cup with a goal from Republic of Ireland international Keith Fahey whose return has generated massive interest in the coming season.
Drogheda United, who lost three cup finals last season, also have a new manager with former goalkeeper and assistant manager Robbie Horgan taking over from Mick Cooke.
The Boynesiders begin with a Louth derby against Dundalk who were runners-up to St Pat’s in 2013.
The Lilywhites have retained the core of last season’s team and strengthened it with the addition of players like Daryl Horgan and David McMillan as Stephen Kenny looks to push them on from last season.
At Thomond Park, Limerick, who are just back from a pre-season camp in Spain, begin against Bray Wanderers.
The same meeting between the sides last season produced an eight goal thriller as they shared the points.
Bray are beginning their tenth successive season in the Premier Division having survived a promotion-relegation play-off with Longford Town and they are now managed by Alan Mathews following the departure of Pat Devlin during the close-season.
The first Dublin derby of the season takes place at The UCD Bowl where UCD entertain northside rivals Bohemians.
Former Bohemians boss Aaron Callaghan is now in charge of the College while Owen Heary is now firmly installed in the Dalymount hot-seat after starting his UEFA Pro-Licence course last month.
SSE Airtricity Premier Division fixtures:
Cork City v St. Patrick's Athletic, Turner's Cross, 19:45.
Drogheda United v Dundalk, United Park, 19:45.
Limerick v Bray Wanderers, Thomond Park, 19:45.
UCD v Bohemians, The UCD Bowl, 19:45.