LOIW Key Battles

29th April 2023

With Round 8 next up in the SSE Airtricity Women's Premier Division, we've taken a closer look at some of the key battles that could unfold in each of the five games on Saturday, April 29th.

With Round 8 next up in the SSE Airtricity Women's Premier Division, we've taken a closer look at some of the key battles that could unfold in each of the five games on Saturday, April 29th.

DLR Waves v Galway United
UCD Bowl - KO 16:00

Aoife Brophy vs Gemma McGuinness
The big question here is whether DLR defender Brophy, who operates at right-back, will be up against McGuinness or her in-form team-mate Jenna Slattery. Both have a tendency to float across the pitch and attack from wide positions but let's focus on McGuinness for now.

The former Sligo Rovers ace is now finding momentum in Phil Trill's team and that is bad news for the hosts in this one. McGuinness is excellent in one-on-one situations, superb at dribbling and one of those players who can make a defender look completely out of sorts.

Brophy, however, is one of the League's most under-rated players. She is from the Seana Cooke mould, a 7/8 out of 10 performer each week, and someone who gets the job done without causing much fuss. She will need to be at the top of her game to stop McGuinness though.


Cork City v Bohemians
Turner's Cross - KO 17:00

Jesse Mendez vs Fiona Donnelly
It has long been known that Mendez is a player of enormous potential. Cork, though, need her to produce more than that. After losing Becky Cassin in the off-season, they plugged a giant hole in their midfield by bringing Mendez back to the club from Treaty United. She has been very good so far but can be great.

Yes it's asking a lot for a young player to become the lynchpin of her side, but Mendez - whose mother Barbara O'Connell was a dominant player in her day - can become just that. Now is the time for her to step up and what better way than to do it against someone like Donnelly.

Bohs knew that they were upgrading their midfield engine room when they recruited Donnelly this season. She has been outstanding in every game this season. A box-to-box player, the Dubliner can drive her team on and if she can keep Mendez quiet then her team could be eyeing an away win.


Peamount United v Shamrock Rovers
PRL Park - KO 17:00

Karen Duggan vs Orlaith O'Mahony
There is a Hall of Fame spot already reserved for Duggan, so she has nothing left to prove in this League. Yet the Kilkenny woman is playing some of her best football this season and is one of the reasons why Peamount currently sit on top of the table.

Duggan knows how to control the tempo of a game and that is something that O'Mahony needs to learn. The Rovers youngster is all-action and covers a huge amount of ground. Although she could do with learning from someone like Duggan in how sometimes less is more. She will experience that head on in this game.

Rovers like to play on the front foot, so O'Mahony has a job of protecting her backline and then linking play with her short passing. The issue here though is that Peamount keep the ball well and Duggan could be the puppeteer pulling the strings.


Sligo Rovers v Athlone Town
The Showgrounds - KO 17:00

Emma Doherty vs Kayleigh Shine
The is a marking job ahead for Shine where her constant scanning of the open space and movement of Doherty must be at the forefront of her mind. Shine is the type of defender who likes to be involved in the action but Saturday's mission will be as much about what she does off the ball.

Doherty is agile, tricky and cunning. She is the type of striker who can slip away from a defender within seconds and be through on goal. And she can finish if afforded half a yard. So Sligo will be keen to get service into her as quickly as possible.

For Athlone to limit the influence of the Donegal native, they will need Shine to intercept passes, win aerial duels and make sure that her opponent has no space to turn into with the ball. This should be a fun one to keep an eye on.


Wexford Youths v Shelbourne
Ferrycarrig Park - KO 18:00

Louise Corrigan vs Noelle Murray
How do you stop Murray from being a game winner? It's a question that coaches and teams have asked since the League started in 2011. And few have come up with a suitable answer. Corrigan now has to figure that out.

The veteran defender arrived at Wexford this year from DLR Waves and brings the kind of cool head that the team needed with injuries to Lauren Dwyer and Della Doherty. She will know all about Murray from previous battles but can she stop herself from falling into the traps the wily playmaker sets?

Murray plays in the No 10 role but can shift forward or further back to open up space or slide passes through to team-mates. If she drops into the lines between Wexford's defence and midfield then Corrigan must decide whether to step up to her or hold off. The decision may influence the outcome of this game.

*All games are LIVE on www.loitv.ie