Liam Buckley's Saints travel to Tallaght Stadium on Friday to face Dublin rivals Shamrock Rovers as they look to maintain their lead at the top of the Airtricity League, kick-off 8pm.
The Saints will be looking to improve on their previous results against the Hoops this season having lost 2-1 in the EA Sports Cup after extra-time and having been defeated 3-0 in what was the Saints' second league game of the season. In the other league clash between the clubs in Richmond Park earlier this year, the game ended in a 0-0 draw.
The Saints will be looking to become the first side to end the Hoops' unbeaten home league record this season, and therefore will hope to replicate their sole league win in Tallaght which came in March 2010. On that occasion, goals from former striker Vinny Faherty and current full-back Ian Bermingham sealed a 2-0 win for the Saints.
Ahead of Friday's clash, Pats' manager Liam Buckley told stpatsfc.com that he was expecting another tight game between the two sides. “Tallaght is always a nice place to play and the pitch is always good up there so it should make for a good game of football. It's a game we're all really looking forward as clashes between the sides are always big occasions.”
“It's an important three points and things are really tight at the top so we'll be going there looking to get the result.”
In team news, Buckley must plan without the services of former Hoops' midfielder Killian Brennan as he serves a one match ban. Elsewhere, Shane McFaul will undergo a fitness test to determine if he has sufficiently recovered from a recent groin injury.
For Saints' defender Aidan Price, a one time First Division and Premier Division league winner with the Hoops, the rivalry between Pats and Rovers is something he knows all about and he revealed to stpatsfc.com that both he and his teammates were all eagerly awaiting the game.
“Yeah I had a few great years at Rovers when I was there. But I've played them a good few times since I left and to be honest all the focus will be on getting the points. As a group we're all really looking forward to the game.”
“We were a bit disappointed with the result against Drogheda last week so we're keen to get back to winning ways. The last time we played in Tallaght in the league, we just weren't good enough. But to be honest it ended up being a real turning point for us. We were really honest with ourselves in knowing what we needed to do and we went on a great run from that moment. Therefore all the lads are really keen to get the three points on Friday.”