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Jul 8, 2022 at 7.45pm UK at United Park
Drogheda
1 - 0
Dundalk
Williams (1')
Heeney (26'), Rooney (34'), Weir (35'), Williams (44'), Nugent (54')
FT(HT: 1-0)

Benson (43'), Kelly (45')

Preview: Drogheda United vs. Dundalk - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Drogheda United vs. Dundalk - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Friday's League of Ireland Premier clash between Drogheda United and Dundalk, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Dundalk will look to move closer to the summit of the League of Ireland Premier Division on Friday, when they travel to take on Drogheda United.

A 3-0 win last time out sees the visitors 10 points off top spot with two games in hand on leaders Shamrock Rovers, while their hosts find themselves ahead of the bottom two by the same margin.


Match preview

Drogheda United had to endure a tough start to the League of Ireland Premier Division season, as they amassed just 13 points from the first 15 matches.

After four straight defeats left them worryingly close to the drop zone, Kevin Doherty's side were able to bounce back with a 3-1 beating of fellow strugglers Finn Harps, before the Drogs defied the odds to make it two on the bounce as Ryan Brennan hit the only goal in a 1-0 win over league leaders Shamrock Rovers.

While they were unable to continue a winning streak, Drogheda did manage to stretch an unbeaten run as they picked up consecutive points from draws with Bohemians, Derry City and Sligo Rovers before travelling to St Patrick's Athletic last time out.

That trip did not go to plan for Doherty's men, though, as they were beaten 3-0 with Billy King, Eoin Doyle and Mark Doyle getting on the scoresheet.

While they have hugely improved their position in recent weeks, the Drogs do remain ten points and just one place above Finn Harps in the relegation playoff place, and they will aim to post another vital victory on Friday to avoid being dragged back towards the bottom two.

They face a tough test, though, as Dundalk arrive looking to move closer to Shamrock Rovers at the top of the division.

After quickly falling off the pace early in the season, picking up just 15 points from their opening 11 outings, the Lilywhites have put themselves in the title race by winning eight of their last 10 league matches and drawing the other two.

A run of five consecutive wins, culminating in a crucial 1-0 beating of the league leaders thanks to Robbie Benson's late goal, saw Stephen O'Donnell's side race into second place and reduce the gap to Shamrock, before their hopes were harmed as they had to settle for a point from a goalless draw with Shelbourne.

The Lilywhites were then able to make an immediate return to winning ways last time out, thrashing University College Dublin 3-0 thanks to goals from David McMillan, Greg Sloggett and Keith Ward, keeping them 10 points behind the defending champions having played two matches fewer.

With Friday acting as one of their games in hand, Dundalk will be desperate to post a second consecutive win to cut that gap to seven points and boost their chances of coming from behind to secure their 15th league title.

Drogheda United League of Ireland Premier form:
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • D
  • L

Dundalk League of Ireland Premier form:
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W

Dundalk form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W


Team News

Drogheda United should again rely on Dean Williams to lead their line, with the 22-year-old notching up five goals in 16 top-flight appearances so far this season.

Veteran midfielder Gary Deegan has virtually been an ever-present throughout the campaign, featuring for the entirety of every game other than their draw with Derry City, for which he was suspended.

He should again line up alongside Luke Heeney and Darragh Nugent in the engine room, with Evan Weir, Andrew Quinn and captain Dane Massey set to form the back three.

Dundalk could come in with an unchanged starting XI after their resounding win over UCD, although Keith Ward will be pushing for a starting spot after his goal off the bench.

Top scorer Patrick Hoban, who has hit eight league goals this term, continued a spell on the sidelines in that game, and, in his absence, David McMillan led the line and got on the scoresheet.

Robbie Benson and Greg Sloggett will continue to anchor the midfield in O'Connor's preferred 4-2-3-1 setup.

Drogheda United possible starting lineup:
McCabe; Weir, Quinn, Massey; Brennan, Deegan, Heeney, Nugent, Markey; Foley, Williams

Dundalk possible starting lineup:
Shepperd; Macari, Connolly, Boyle, Leahy; Sloggett, Benson; Kelly, Ward, Adams; McMillan


We say: Drogheda United 0-2 Dundalk

With little room for error and the chance to reduce the gap to the league leaders, we do not see this in-form Dundalk side faltering on Friday and expect them to return home with all three points.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.


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