Moinday evening match in Tallaght Stadium kicks off at 8 pm. Tickets are available here. The match will be streamed on LOITV.

A disappointing loss in Oriel Park, in what certainly wasn’t a classic game. While it’s not a mortal blow to our title hopes, is our recent run of results a concern?

“I think you need to look at each one in isolation. We’d like to have more points and more wins on the board, there’s no doubt about that. But to be fair to the group, being stretched and where they’ve been in terms of numbers, I think they’ve been brilliant in terms of stepping up. We’ll see how it is come the end of the season. We always have a run at some point in the season when you don’t quite hit your form, drop points, lose or draw games. Right now, we lost on Friday, so we need to look to bounce back.”

You stated after the game on LOITV, that we weren’t good enough in the final third. Is that decision-making or movement or technical errors in that regard and how do we put that right?

“It’s a bit of everything mixed in. When you’re not good in the final third, people might assume you’re just talking about shooting but it’s so much more than that. There’s movement, the timing of movement, the timing of pass, that little understanding. It’s something we know we have, we create the most chances in the league by a long way. In Dundalk, we didn’t do that. The players are human, sometimes that happens. But when you look over the course of this season and last season, we created the most in the league by a long way. We just need to stay calm, stay focussed on what we do, and we know we’ll create opportunities.”

As you said before, the group is good at moving on from results, whether it’s a win, a draw or a loss. So, there’ll be no panic setting in with half a season to go.

“No, we’ve been here before. We understand we controlled a scrappy game on Friday, when you’re in those games where it looks nobody is going to win it, you make sure you don’t lose it. We lost on Friday and that’s the disappointing bit. But this group doesn’t panic, we don’t like it, but we need to understand why we lost the game and move on quickly. But there’ll be no panic, we’ve been here before and know what it takes. We’re not even halfway through the season, if we have enough come the end of it, we have enough and if we don’t, we don’t.”

So, to the Derry game in Tallaght; the team will really need the fans behind them from the off, everyone sticking together with Derry coming off a good win away to St  Pat’s, it should be a cracking game.

“It should be a good game. I’ve no doubt our fans will be good. They’ve never been anything but good for us. I’m sure they’re frustrated at the moment, I’m sure there’s a bit of anger with some, that’s quite normal with fans and they have every right to feel that way. They’re passionate about the team and the club, but one thing that’s never wavered is their support. We saw it in Dundalk on Friday, the support they gave the players. I’m sure it was a nightmare for most of them to get out of Dublin, but we still had the crowd we had, so you can never doubt our fans will show up. We’ll definitely need them tomorrow night, then it’s up to us to go and perform and get the three points.”

Despite our convincing win away to Derry recently, that’s gone so what are their main areas of danger to us?

“What they always are. We know they have really good individuals; Duffy, Patching, McEleney, McMullen. They’ve got really good individuals dotted around the pitch. We know Derry are a good side, but we know we’ve got to respect and understand what they do, but impose ourselves on them as soon as possible, which we did recently in Derry and which we’ll try and do tomorrow night.”

You got Aaron McEneff back on the pitch on Friday, Jack Byrne made his first start and played 90 minutes, did they and everyone else emerge ok and are any who missed Dundalk available for the Derry game?

“We’re looking at Lee Grace, Dylan Watts and Richie Towell today, they’re all right there. We’ll check on them at training before making a decision. Jack came through it all right, we were a bit worried about giving him 90 minutes on that pitch, but I thought he did really well. He’s been out for a long time, and we’ve tried to build him back in, there were times he looked really good, but he came through it well. Aaron also came through it well which is really good, there were a few knocks out of Friday but nothing major came out of the game which is pleasing.”