ANOTHER Munster derby tonight as Cork City take on Treaty United of Limerick in what I expect to be another close encounter.
Although Colin Healy is focusing on one game at a time surely having the next two games at home is a chance for him to try and get six points and get his side back up the table.
There’s a lot of pressure on him at the moment as the standards required from the team certainly have not been met yet this season.
At this stage I feel I’m repeating myself every week about the vital need of a win for Colin Healy’s side.
Currently sitting second from bottom on the table with just 12 points, every game from here on should be a must win game.
I suppose the only part that’s not pressure for Healy is that he’s guaranteed his side won’t be demoted this season.
They can’t be.
Does this really take the pressure off Healy? I don’t think so.
He, like the rest of us are disappointed to see the current position of the team and I know he will put pressure on himself to make sure his side at least make the play offs.
Have City’s performances been improving?
I suppose you can say they have been doing better than the first series of the season but it’s still not good enough.
We saw against Shels last week where they again conceded sloppy goals and this has punished City time and time again this season.
There have been many games where City may have dominated possession, however their decision making in the final third of the pitch hasn’t been good enough.
They know that but what has been done about it? A striker is needed and needed quick.
City head into tonight’s game on the back of a 2-1 defeat against Shels.
While they might have been happy with their improved score line of 3-1 in their previous meeting, it was still minus three points for Healy's men and they will want to improve on that tonight.
City played well against Shels last weekend and surely this will give them a little more confidence as they head into tonight’s game against Treaty, who they themselves also suffered a surprise defeat at home to Galway.
Treaty currently sit third on the table with 22 points and Tommy Barrett’s men have been in flying form.
Prior to last weeks defeat against Galway, the Limerick side were on a great run of form with four games unbeaten.
The last time these sides met earlier in the season Treaty enjoyed a 2-1 victory with Cork man Anthony O’Donnell opening the scoring before Cian Coleman equalised minutes later.
However, a 78th minute goal from Matt Keane proved to be the winner on the night.
All season we have seen how organised and solid Treaty have been and I expect the same this evening.
It will be another tough test for City as Treaty have been solid in defence only conceding 12 all season.
They will be hard to break down and without any real threat up front from City this season, it’s hard to see where the goals will come from. Munster derbies are always a tough affair and added with the spice of former Cork City players playing with Treaty such as Tadgh Ryan and Charlie Fleming as well as Cork man Anthony O’Donnell, it should make a very entertaining game of football.
In the last meeting between the sides, City had 90% of possession up until Treaty scored which was just on the half hour mark.
However, as we’ve been saying all season, they can have all the possession, but unless they’re scoring goals, it counts for nothing.
And hopefully that can change this evening.
Home crowds again have been decreased from 600 to 200, however for the lucky 200 fans that will get into tonight’s game, let’s hope they will enjoy a good game of football and hopefully they can play the 12th man in getting Healy’s men over the line to secure all three badly needed points.
Next up for City is a home fixture against Bray which will be another difficult game as the Seagulls currently sit mid table but if Healy’s men can secure two home wins it puts them in a more respectable position indeed.
Also tonight, Cobh Ramblers travel to the Carlisle grounds to take on Bray.
A difficult place to go with Gary Cronin’s men back on form at the moment. Currently sitting mid table, they had a draw last weekend against Athlone and prior to that an emphatic four nil win over UCD so this should be a tough battle for Stuart Ashton's men.