Shamrock Rovers v Sligo Rovers, Tallaght Stadium, 8pm.
League leaders Shamrock Rovers will be looking to continue their bright start to the season. It's ten years since they moved into Tallaght Stadium, coincidentally they played their first match against this evening's opponents.
The Hoops' lead at the top is two points, but with Bohs going to Cork, and Dundalk facing a tricky game at the Brandywell, Stephen Bradley will be determined to keep the pressure on those clubs with a win.
Liam Buckley's visitors are going for their third win on the bounce. They won the last clash between the clubs in October, although that was at The Showgrounds, and Buckley was watching from the stands as he prepared to take over the first team.
Shamrock Rovers: Ethan Boyle is an injury concern for the Hoops ahead of tonight's game, but otherwise, manager Stephen Bradley has a full squad to choose from.
Sligo: Regan Donelon, Kyle Callan-McFadden and Dante Leverock have returned to training throughout this week for the visitors, while Ed McGinty will miss the trip to Dublin with a finger injury.
🏴 A certain Scottish striker scored our first goal at @tallaghtstadium that day after 18 minutes. He would go on to score 88 goals in 160 appearances for the club, making him a Rovers legend ☘️ #OhTwiggOfScotland pic.twitter.com/lNrQjhf07J— Shamrock Rovers FC 🇮🇪 (@ShamrockRovers) March 13, 2019
Stephen Bradley (Shamrock Rovers): They've won two games, drawn away at Dundalk and got beaten late on against Pat's. They've had a good start. Liam's teams always play good football so they will come and and a go and they will be looking win the gameto get a result, I'm sure of that.
Liam Buckley (Sligo Rovers): "I’ve had some wins in Tallaght previously and it’s a great place to pick up a result if you can do so. It’s certainly what we’re targeting and something we are looking forward to trying to do. We’ll give it a good go."
UCD v Finn Harps, UCD Bowl, 7.45pm.
It's far too early in the season to get into talk of relegation six pointers, but both teams go into the game without a win so far this season. With only one team going down directly, managers Collie O'Neill and Ollie Horgan will have been targeting this as a game from which to begin a run of form.
The Students have certainly been performing better over the last couple of weeks, and they managed to rescue a point against St Pat's in their last game at Belfield. But the lack of goals, with just two scored in five games, has been compounded by the loss of Conor Davis.
Finn Harps have conceded nine goals in their last three games, but Horgan knows this is a game they can take points from. Their record there last season, when both clubs were in the First Division, was poor as they took a point from two games.
UCD: Paul Doyle, Neil Farrugia and Conor Davis are all out for UCD, as well as long term absentee Evan Osam.
Finn Harps: There was some good news for Ollie Horgan this week, with the news that John Kavanagh has returned to training.
Gareth Harkin and Mark Timlin are definitely out, while Nathan Boyle and Caolan McAleer face late fitness tests before kick-off this evening.
Collie O'Neill (UCD): "We controlled large parts of the game (against Sligo), and created plenty of chances to win the game, however we didn’t have that little bit of luck that we needed. We will be looking to keep the performances up on Friday night, and hopefully we can look to start building that bit of momentum as we look to start moving up the table."
Ollie Horgan (Finn Harps): "We must be prepared for an onslaught from UCD. They were unlucky not to get something from the game against Sligo Rovers and that will make them doubly determined to throw everything at getting three points against us on their home pitch."
Derry City v Dundalk, Ryan McBride Brandywell Stadium, 7.45pm.
Derry have been consistent, and they will have been happy enough to take a point from last week's trip to Dalymount.
They bring a 100% home record into this evening's clash, having also scored six goals in those wins over UCD and Waterford.
The champions have recovered from a slow start to win two of their last three games. They're still unbeaten, and their trajectory is certainly heading in the right direction after last week's hammering of Waterford.
Derry: Patrick McClean is ruled out for the Candystripes due to a hamstring issue, while Michael McCrudden remains out with a long-term injury. Jamie McDonagh is suspended for the visit of Dundalk.
Dundalk: Robbie Benson and Patrick McEleney are ruled out with leg and foot injuries respectively. Michael Duffy and John Mountney are also out with groin problems. Chris Shields misses out with a knee injury. Dean Jarvis faces a late fitness test on his injured calf.
Declan Devine (Derry): "It’s a brilliant game for us. We’ve got to be competitive in the game and we must respect our opponents. We’re playing at home and we’ve got to give everything to get something from the match."
Vinny Perth (Dundalk): "It's a tough place to go, the Brandywell, and we look forward to going there. I have a lot of time for Declan Devine. He is a student of Stephen Kenny - no different than myself! He seems to have got the club going again in Derry and they have got their identity back."
Waterford v St Patrick's Athletic, RSC, 7.45pm.
Both teams come into the game off disappointing defeats last week. For Alan Reynolds and Waterford, it was the nature of the defeat, as they conceded four at Dundalk.
They've managed just one win in their last four at home, and with the clubs behind them playing against one another at Belfield, The Blues will want to pick up points.
A defeat and two draws in their last three games has left Pat's sitting in mid-table. They've scored three goals this season, all from Mikey Drennan, so Harry Kenny will be expecting other players to start contributing in that department.
Waterford: Shane Duggan, Izzy Akinade and Kenny Browne are to be assessed before the game.
St Pats: Harry Kenny travels to the south-east with a full squad to choose from
Alan Reynolds (Waterford): "The lads were disappointed after the game (against Dundalk) but we have to pick ourselves up and go again. St Pats have started the season well and have lost just once so they’ll be out to pick up points."
Harry Kenny (St Pats): "I was a little bit disappointed in the way we performed last week against Shamrock Rovers. But football is like that and it just was not meant to be. After starting with two great results against Cork and Sligo, we need to get back to winning ways."
Cork City v Bohemian FC, Turner's Cross, 7.45pm.
Still early in the season, this game already has the feeling of a big game for both clubs. City are already six points off the top of the table, and anything other than three points isn't conceivable for the 2017 winners.
Bohs are second in the table, but they've played a game less than Shamrock Rovers. They'll want to come away with at least a point from their trip south.
Home advantage proved to be massive last season, with Cork taking six points from the games between the clubs played at The Cross, while Bohs took four points from the matches at Dalymount.
Cork: Alan Bennett, Karl Sheppard, and Seán McLoughlin, will be assessed before kick-off this evening, but City are definitely without Matty Gillam and Gearóid Morrissey.
Bohs: Keith Buckley returns from a groin injury, while Dinny Corcoran remains a doubt with a similar concern. Michael Barker (hamstring) played 45 minutes in the Leinster Senior Cup on Monday and also comes back into contention. Kevin Devaney (knee) has returned to training but will not be risked. Aaron Barry is unavailable against his parent club.
John Caulfield (Cork): "It's no different to any other team coming down here. We have to make sure we can kick on from last Friday night. We need to open up the play and create chances."
Keith Long (Bohemian FC): "Cork will be up near the top of the table at the end of the season. They will come good. The profile of John's team has changed a bit, they're a bit younger this season and they are still gelling.
"They had a brilliant win up in Finn Harps last week and going down to Turner's Cross has traditionally been one of the toughest tasks in the league. They've a huge crowd who come out to support them. But we're going there with confidence. We want to maintain our unbeaten start to the season.
"Hopefully we'll have another good away crown - we did in Belfield and down in Waterford - as that can give us a big lift when you come out on to the pitch."