Live previews - Managers look ahead to match day

29th February 2024

Live from press conferences and releases ahead of League of Ireland match day

Join us here throughout the day for live updates from managers around the country ahead of tomorrow's League of Ireland clashes. 



Stephen Bradley has been speaking ahead of tomorrow night's clash with Drogheda United. 

“Yes, we’re really happy. Obviously, we want more points on the board, we wanted two wins. But I get a completely different feel around the group this year. Last year I could feel the tension, the nervousness and the tightness within the group with all the talk surrounding four in a row. This year I feel a complete freedom and freshness, so it’s a really nice feeling and I thought parts of the Dundalk performance showed that and the last hour last week also showed it. We need to turn that into a 90-minute performance now, but I like where the group is in terms of that aspect. We would like more points, but we won’t panic, we’ve been here before and know what it takes.”


Waterford team news in...

New signing Connor Evans is unavailable after picking up a knock in training. Christie Pattisson is away on compassionate leave. Harvey MacAdam comes into the squad after joining the Blues on loan last week from sister-club Fleetwood Town.


Jon Daly speaks on a big weekend for the Saints:

"We need to go into the game with optimism and confidence and make sure that we acquit ourselves really well and give ourselves the best chance of coming away with three points.

Derry are one of the few teams in the league that haven't had much upheaval.

They've got some fantastic players within their squad that will pose a challenge to us.

We always bring a good travelling support, and they have a good home support up there, so the atmosphere will be very good and it's on TV too.

It's one that myself, the staff and the players are looking forward to."


Stephen O'Donnell is looking to bounce back after last week's defeat to Galway United speaking to The Argus. 

“We spoke about it and where we want to play so that’s probably the most disappointing thing. Then we got a bit of a hold of it for 10 or 15 minutes in the first half for a spell and should have got a goal back. In the second half, we got a little bit of a foothold but, probably, as the second half went on, body language and belief-wise, which is understandable with quite a new team, sort of petered out. We can’t be that team either.

“It’s going to take that little bit of time for the lads to settle in but I don’t think our start had anything got to do with that side of it. We just, from a basic point of view, were playing far too deep and from the get-go without having earned the right to get control of the game. We didn’t have control of the game and we were building up far, far too deep and encouraging Galway to get a press and giving them real oxygen in how they were going about it and it created edginess amongst ourselves and our supporters.

“We’ve got to get the crowd engaged and how you get them engaged is by playing in the opposition half, getting bodies running forward and playing progressive football. We did the opposite to that. We were passive, we were square, we were backwards and we were deep.

“Our front man was isolated and that’s how you get a crowd disengaged and that’s what happened tonight. It fed off that. We can’t want the crowd to be our 12th man and really get behind us and then all our actions and our football displayed the opposite of that in the first 25 minutes or half an hour.”

O’Donnell is hopeful of bouncing back against Bohs on Friday though.

“They’ve beaten Pat’s 1-0 away so they’ll be buoyed by that. It’s a tough place to go Dalymount but we’ll look forward to the game and we’ll see where we’re at. They’re all tough games but we’ll take it one game at a time and hopefully we bounce back on Friday.”

Derry City

Derry City are unbeaten after two matches of SSE Airtricity Men's Premier Division season ahead of the visit of the Saints for a match live on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player on Friday night as well as on LOITV outside the island of Ireland. 

Despite suffering a loss to Bohemians last week, Higgins is expecting a tough encounter at the Ryan McBride Brandywell.

It’s the first part of a difficult run for City as they meet the Sports Direct Men's FAI Cup holders on Friday before a trip to Tallaght on Monday to take on champions Shamrock Rovers.

Higgins said: "Pat’s are a really good team. They’ve recruited well and they will be very, very difficult to beat. But we’re at home and we want to try and go and win the game.

"I think it is an extremely competitive league and you’ll see that again this weekend on Friday and Monday.

"It is why we are in the game. We want to be involved in big fixtures, it’ll be a sellout here on Friday and something similar on Monday.

"Our only focus at this minute in time is trying to beat a really good side on Friday night."

Last Saturday’s draw with Sligo Rovers came at a price as Cameron Dummigan and Patrick McEleney suffered injuries and were forced off during the game.

The prognosis has been good, however, in particularly when it comes to McEleney who is a key man in the attacking midfield element of City’s side.

Higgins revealed: "We got some decent news regarding Patrick. It isn’t anywhere near as bad as first feared which is great.

"It was the best pre-season Patrick has had in a long time which is why it is harder to swallow that he picked up an injury.

"We’ve got decent news and we’re hopeful he’ll be back in the not too distant future. The thing with Patrick is you know if you get him back fit and well he is as good as anything in the country. That’s why we’ll keep pushing him and he’ll keep pushing himself because we know what an unbelievable footballer he is.

"Cameron Dummigan’s injury is a small bit more complex so we are waiting on more details."

Sadou Diallo will also miss out for City due to injury.

SSE Airtricity Men's First Division

Cork City supremo Tim Clancy is pleased enough with his lot after the opening two games heading into Friday's game. 

"In the grand scheme of things, a point up in Donegal isn’t the worst result - especially given the condition of the pitch. After two games with fours points, I don’t think it’s the worst start. I don’t think we gave them too many chances as we were chasing the game. Overall for the 90 minutes I thought we defended well and we were pushing for an equaliser and then for a winner as well." 

He also believes goals will be coming through Jack Doherty but is still figuring out UCD's title credentials. 

"Jack’s got a lot of experience and ability as well. As long as we keep creating chances for the lads up the top of the pitch then goals won’t be a problem. 

"It’s hard to assess UCD so far. They had a great win agains Bray but they would have played that game with ten men for 60 or 70 minutes and then last week they lost 1-0 but they were in the Collingwood Cup so it’s hard to gauge where they are after two games but they’re a very fit group with a lot of talented young players as well as Ronan Finn with that experience and they’ll be up there at the end of the season."