This week’s headline game in the League of Ireland Premier Division brings the unbeaten Cork City to Derry City in what should be a very tight affair.
Derry, despite their poor defending which has become a recurring theme in this piece, were extremely unlucky against Bray Wanderers last time.
Nathan Boyle’s disallowed goal was one of the worst decision’s this season and Derry will feel they’re due a bit of luck.
Of all Cork’s remaining fixtures, this one looks amongst the toughest. I’ve said all season that Cork are running like a well-oiled machine.
But I still feel they’re likely to drop points at some stage. With the unfortunate injury to captain Johnny Dunleavy, who is likely to face a long spell on the sidelines, Cork’s back four will have their work cut out.
The best way to find value on a Cork win in this game is to back them to come from behind and secure victory at 17/2.
I’m going to give Derry a chance in this one though, and back the draw.
Next in the firing line for defensive frailties is the Drogheda United defence. After Thomas Byrne submitted his effort for the most brainless red card of the season, the Drogs put up a fairly lethargic effort as they were demolished 6-0 by rivals Dundalk last time out.
This was a game that really showed the gap between the top and bottom teams.
Shamrock Rovers are still trying to break into that top tier, but should have enough about them to beat Drogheda handily.
Overall, Rovers, including their management, are still a very young team but they will be expected to kick on a bit in the second half of the season.
Against a Drogheda team that haven’t scored in their last six games, you could follow in joint top scorer Brandon Miele to outscore the opposition at 7/2.
But I’ll be taking the value on Rovers to win both halves.
To complete the hat-trick for defensive blunders, take your pick of Limerick or St. Patrick’s Athletic.
Despite a resurgent second-half performance from Bohemians, St. Pats’ 3-1 loss in the Dublin Derby felt like entirely their own making.
Continuous lapses in concentration and poor marking saw them throw away a lead in a game they badly needed to win and they’re now beginning to look adrift at the bottom of the table.
Meanwhile, Limerick, continued their habit of looking like a an attacking force with one or two massive defensive shockers each match.
They played well enough against Cork in the first half only for Robbie Williams to gift Sean Maguire a one-on-one with the goalkeeper 15 seconds into the second-half.
At a massive 40/1, there’s value in backing Kurtis Byrne to score and St.Pat’s to lose. I’m banking on a goalfest at the Markets Field on Saturday and going with over 2.5 goals in the first-half.
Treble: Derry and Cork to draw, Shamrock Rovers to win both halves against Drogheda, Over 2.5 goals in the first-half between Limerick and St. Pat’s @ 80/1
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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing