News and Match Preview – Shelbourne v Longford Town

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Shelbourne v Longford Town

SSE Airrtricity League – First Division

Tolka Park – February 24th – KO 7.45pm

The long awaited 2017 season starts on Friday night and for Shelbourne that means a our first game of the season against Longford Town, with two ex-Shelbourne bosses in control – Alan Mathews (manager) and Kevin Doherty as his assistant. This SSE Airtricity League, First Division game at Tolka Park will kick off at 7.45pm.

This season, with only one promotion place on offer, competition will be tougher and more intense than for years past, so it will be most important for teams to get off to a good start.

Both these side had tough pre-season games against strong Premier Division opposition, with Shelbourne defeating Bohemians, St. Patricks Athletic and Derry City. Shelbourne also defeated fellow First Division side Wexford FC (4-2) in the Leinster Senior Cup.

Last season, Shelbourne finished sixth in the First Division, while Longford finished their second season back in the Premier Division at the bottom of the table and so were automatically demoted. Going into Friday’s game, one should not read too much into last season’s finishing positions for the two sides, as both clubs have strengthened their squads considerably.

Manager Owen Heary’s thoughts on Friday’s game – and prospects for the season to come: “We’ve a tough opener against Longford. They’re tipped to win the league, and probably rightfully so – them and Waterford – but hopefully we’ll get in and surprise a few along the way and stay in there and come the end of the season and if we’re there with a shout, well who knows!”

Shelbourne’s squad for 2017 is:

Goalkeepers: Dean Delany, Jamie Quinn

Defenders: Adam O’Connor, Aidan Collins, Reece McEntrre, Jack Tuite, James Brown, Jason Caffrey, Derek Prendergast, Alan Byrne

Midfield: Dylan Kavanagh, Lorcan Shannon, Dylan Grimes, Michael Murphy, Niall Lanigan, Robert Bayly, James O’Brien

Forwards: James English, Dayle Rooney, Adam Evans, Chris Lyons, Aaron Ashe, Jackson Ryan

With no injuries reported on Wednesday night, Heary should have a full squad to select from for Friday’s game.

Suspended: None

Injured: None

Doubtful: None

Goal Scorers (Competitive 2017)

James English – 3 (3 LSC)

Dayle Rooney – 1 (1 LSC)

Previous Meetings
Date: August 29, 2014
Shelbourne 0-0 Longford Town
Shels Scorer/s:
Date: July 5, 2014
Longford Town 3-0 Shelbourne
Shels Scorer/s:
Date: May 2, 2014
Shelbourne 3-2 Longford Town
Shels Scorer/s: Tinnelly, Coughlan, Connolly
Date: March 15, 2014
Longford Town 0-1 Shelbourne
Shels Scorer/s: Keegan
Competitive 2017
Date: February 17, 2017
Shelbourne 4-2 Wexford (Leinster Senior Cup)
Shels Scorer/s: English 3, Rooney
Pre-Season 2017
Date: January 27, 2017
Bohemians 0-1 Shelbourne
Shels Scorer/s: Aaron Ashe
Date: February 5, 2017
Shelbourne 2-1 st. Patrick's Ath
Shels Scorer/s: Aaron Ashe, Adam Evans
Date: February 8, 2017
Shelbourne 1-0 Derry City
Shels Scorer/s: Adam Evans