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League of Ireland Premier | Gameweek 20
Jun 9, 2023 at 7.45pm UK
Tolka Park
1 - 1
Smith (4')
Boyd (20'), Quinn (51')
FT(HT: 1-1)
Morahan (34')
Mahon (45+3'), Fitzgerald (64'), Morahan (89')

Preview: Shelbourne vs. Sligo Rovers - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Friday's League of Ireland Premier clash between Shelbourne and Sligo Rovers, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Two places separate Shelbourne and Sligo Rovers in the League of Ireland Premier Division heading into Friday's meeting at Tolka Park.

The home side tend to secure positive results at their ground, but the same cannot be said for Rovers, whose road form leaves much to be desired.

Match preview

Damien Duff finally celebrated a victory after his side went three games without one when they defeated Drogheda United 3-2 on Monday.

Shels had picked up two points from nine before the previous encounter and will hope that win brings about a return to form after recent wobbles.

Their mini-slump saw them lose ground on third place, guaranteeing Europa Conference League qualification, with six points separating Duff's team from third-placed St Patrick's Athletic, who are level on points with second-placed Derry City.

Shelbourne's form at Tolka Park (18 points) outdoes all but one side — St Patrick's — who have accrued one more at home from 10 games.

Home comforts should bring Shels their eighth league victory, even if they are not expected to be handed out maximum points.

The visiting side to Dublin are Rovers, whose wretched form on their travels makes them the underdog before Friday's encounter.

Only Cork City (five points) and University College Dublin (one) have secured fewer away points than John Russell's troops, who have 10 points outside Sligo.

Four of their last five matches outside West Ireland have been defeats, even if 12 goals conceded in nine road games points to the closeness of many of those encounters.

Only one away game — a 2-0 loss at Bohemians — has ended with a two-goal margin reverse, underlining some doggedness from Rovers.

It remains to be seen how they fare at Shelbourne, but there is a sense that the club from Sligo will not be embarrassed at Tolka Park.

Shelbourne League of Ireland Premier form:

Sligo Rovers League of Ireland Premier form:

Team News

A knee injury suffered by Conor Kane last September continues to rule the Shelbourne left-back out of action for Duff's team.

Shels are expected to continue in a back three, although their boss has utilised several variations throughout the season.

Garry Buckley, Mark Byrne, Gary Boylan, Conor Walsh, Karl O'Sullivan and James Finnerty are all absent through injury for Rovers.

Russell recently admitted to the team's rough situation with injuries, and the manager is also expected to be without Greg Bolger and Eanna Clancy, who went off injured on June 2's 2-0 defeat against Bohemians.

Shelbourne possible starting lineup:
Kearns; Quinn, Byrne, Griffin; Wilson, Lunney, Caffrey, Wilson; Farrell, Moylan, Robinson

Sligo Rovers possible starting lineup:
McNicholas; Brannefalk, Morahan, Lafferty, Hutchinson; Crawley, Lagerfeldt; Liivak, Barlow, Fitzgerald; Mata

SM words green background

We say: Shelbourne 2-1 Sligo Rovers

Five of Shelbourne's home victories have been by a goal margin, while Rovers' defeats tend to end similarly.

With that in mind, the expectation is another tight affair at Tolka Park, with Duff's men sealing a sixth home success this term.

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

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data

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