- Friday March 29th, 2013 @ 16:14
Preview: Saints Vs Limerick
The Saints make the trip to the south west to face Limerick in a league clash for the first time in 19 years as the Inchicore side look to return to winning ways and climb the league table.
The game sees Liam Buckley's side return to action after a two week lay-off following the postponements of home games against Bohemians and Shelbourne due to the adverse weather conditions in the past few weeks.
The game is the club's first league encounter with the Shannonsiders in Limerick since March 1994 when the sides drew 2-2, while the most recent clash between the sides was in June 2009 in the FAI Cup third round as an Anthony Costigan goal gave the Saints a 1-0 win in Jackman Park.
One would have to go back to the 1989/1990 league winning season and the days when the club were managed by former Republic of Ireland manager, Brian Kerr, for Pats' last league win in Limerick as goals from John Tracey and Mick Moody (2) saw Kerr's Saints ease to a 3-0 win in January 1990.
In team news for this weekend's game, Saints' manager Liam Buckley has a full squad to choose from, meaning that Stephen Maher is in contention for his first competitive game since joining the club and that former Limerick keeper Dave Ryan is available to face his former side having returned to full training after recovering from a hand injury.
“Limerick have had a solid start to the season and have caught the eye of a lot of people in their opening games to date with some very good performances to date,” stated Buckley when speaking to stpatsfc.com.
“Stuart Taylor has put a decent squad together in a short space of time and they'll be tough to beat on Saturday. But we're really keen to get back to action as we've had a full squad idle now for two weeks now so it'll be good to get back playing and hopefully a win.”
While the returning Dave Ryan potentially faces his former club, he is however spared the prospect of playing his older brother and former Saints' number one, Barry Ryan as he serves a one match ban. However having played for Limerick in their first game in Thomond Park last year versus Manchester City, 24 year old Dave is hoping to have better memories of the ground after being stretchered off in the game with the English Champions.
“Yeah that wasn't the best of days for me getting injured against City, but hopefully things will be different this weekend,” Ryan told stpatsfc.com. “Thomond Park is a spectacular ground, easily one of the best in Ireland, and will be tough to play there though as Limerick are off to a flyer at the moment, the squad they have there now have a few points on the board already so they look good.”
“But we'll be looking for the 3 points and get back up the table as it's been tough the past few weeks with no games while teams like Limerick have been in action.”