THIS will be the second meeting between the sides in a week after their league encounter last Bank Holiday Monday at Turner's Cross, a game City won 3-0.
However, that was the league, a competition both sides would see as their priority. I don't see many players that played at Turner's Cross featuring for this clash. From the club’s perspective; this competition will mean more to Treaty than City.
The Limerick outfit are only in existence less than 18 months, and although the Munster Senior Cup might not be the most appealing competition for a League of Ireland side to win, for Treaty, it gives them the chance to win the first trophy in the club’s history and I’m sure the Treaty players and Tommy Barrett want to be the ones to achieve that bit of history.
Treaty haven’t played a fixture since facing City, and Barrett might feel that some first-team regulars could use some game time ahead of Friday’s fixture against Bray Wanderers. I would expect Treaty to be more adventurous than how they played against the league leaders at Turners Cross.
The Limerick side sat off City and were time-wasting earlier in the game. They rightly came into the game with the mindset of earning a point. I expect they will have a different attitude for this one and will make it a much tougher game.
For City; they are competing for the title and have won numerous trophies throughout the years and enjoyed success in Europe, this competition is more about developing players and gives some first-team players who have not regularly featured in the league an opportunity to get some game time. Although City are without a fixture next weekend, I would be surprised if Colin Healy decided to risk any of his regular first-team players for this game.
Mark O’Mahony, who impressed in the meeting last week, should feature again. The 17-year-old showed great confidence and maturity in his first start for the club. He displayed great technique, although at times did seem nervous which is only expected, and I would expect him to improve even further once he plays a few more first-team games which will help ease those nerves.
He is hard-working and is a presence up front. He is only 17, and will get physically stronger and will continue to improve.
Zach Dunne is another player I expect to feature. The winger is an exciting talent and is a player that will get fans off their seats. He is brave because of his willingness to take players on. Dunne’s first thought when receiving the ball is to be positive and go forward rather than the saver option of looking for a pass.
Sometimes Dunne’s willingness to entertain and be positive can cause a little weakness in his game but I think this is only natural for a player that plays the way he does. He does so well to go past one opponent but can delay crossing the ball at a given opportunity because he wants to drive into the box. He needs to realise that once he is in a good crossing area; there is no shame in putting the ball in the box early but that will come with more experience.
The game will provide a good opportunity for more experienced players like Josh Honohan, Ronan Hurley and Kieran Coates to get more minutes under their belt in order to gain match fitness when required for league games.
I expect to see a very young City side and a big factor could be the condition of the pitch. The surface at Markets Field has been criticised this season and it might not suit younger players, who I imagine would have been trained to play a more attractive style of football.
I would imagine a lot more direct football on show tonight and this game will be a battle like all Munster derbies are.