Both St. Patrick’s and Cork City are in good form ahead of their clash in the Irish Premier Division on Friday night, but the visitors are the favourites to take all three points. Cork could move top of the table if they win, but only in the unlikely event that Dundalk lose at home to bottom of the table Bray Wanderers. St. Patrick’s have plenty of motivation to go all out in search of victory, as three points could see the fifth placed club move into the top three.
When Cork City played host to St. Patrick’s back in April a very close and competitive game produced just a single goal. To the surprise of the crowd it was St. Patrick’s who had the best of the game, creating more scoring opportunities and holding the lion’s share of the overall possession, despite being away from home. However, after a goalless first half it was Cork City who drew first blood when Cummins scored just five minutes after the restart. St. Patrick’s tried to find an equaliser but just weren’t clinical enough in the final third and Cork City eventually saw out the game and collected the three points they were predicted to achieve before kick-off.
Both sides have been in good form over the last month or so, but with four wins, one draw, and one defeat in their last six matches its Cork City who just edge the form guide. Hosts St. Patrick’s have also won four of their last six matches, but their other two games ended in defeat. We believe Cork City will beat St. Patrick’s on Friday as they have been very strong in defence of late, keeping three clean sheets in their last three matches. The visitors also have a good record against St. Patrick’s, winning five of the last six matches against Friday’s hosts. Cork City have the second best goal difference in the Irish Premier Division, +21, and certainly possess the ability to outscore the home side that mean defence is capable of keeping a clean sheet.
American Jake Keegan top scores for St. Patrick’s this season with five Premier Division goals in eleven starts, while Cummins leads the way for the visitors with eight league goals, and of course scored the winner when the pair last met.
We’re confident that Cork City will win on Friday and stretch their unbeaten run in the league to five games. The visitors have more goals in them and a stronger defence, and while the home advantage lies with St. Patrick’s, Cork have a very good recent record against this particular opponent. In term of a final score, we can see this game being another close one with just one goal being scored and Cork City taking all three points.
St. Patrick’s Athletic Predicted Lineup: Farago, Bermingham, Madden, Toner, Desmond, C. Byrne, Brennan, Markey, T. Byrne, Lennon, Keegan.
Cork City Predicted Lineup: McNulty, Horgan, Beattie, Griffin, McCarthy, McLoughlin, Keohane, Sadlier, McNamee, Buckley, Cummins.
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Friday’s match marks the 80th played between St. Patrick’s and Cork City, and with 33 wins, 17 draws, and 29 defeats its the visitors who edge the head to head record. Cork City have won five of the last six meetings between the two teams.
St. Patrick’s have been given a clean bill of health and have no suspended players ahead of Friday nights game against Cork City.
Morrissey and Dunleavy are rated as doubtful to feature on Friday, but could face late fitness tests.