Sligo Rovers will look to stay clear at the top of the table when they entertain St Patrick’s Athletic at The Showgrounds on Friday night, kick-off 7.05pm.

Watch Sligo Rovers v St Patrick’s Athletic live on RTÉ Two or worldwide on RTÉ.ie from 7.00pm.

The Bit o’ Red are four points clear of the Saints after eight games of the season as the two best defences in the league clash.

Rovers have a big doubt over Alan Keane as the defender picked up a knee injury in the Setanta Cup clash with Crusaders on Monday. Jason McGuinness has returned to training and is back in the squad on Friday night.

Sligo boss Ian Baraclough said: “These are the games you want to be involved in, where you’re top of the league and the cameras are coming down.

"This one game will not decide who wins honours this year, it is just three points but it is a match we want to win.

“I think St Pat’s will play their own game and I expect it to be an open game, but both defences have done well this year. We have defended as a team and it is something I like the side to do.”

Saints striker Stephen O’Flynn has a slight thigh strain but the rest of their squad is available.

St Pat’s boss Liam Buckley said: “Sligo have started the season impressively and have continued to produce a really decent brand of football since Paul Cook has left.

“Ian has come in at short notice and done a fantastic job to have his side at the top and still unbeaten. We’re really looking forward to the challenge though, and similarly, we’ll be trying to remain unbeaten.”