Match stats: Pat's v Rovers
Last Tuesday's 2-0 defeat to Drogheda United brought to an end Sligo Rovers' 100% record so far this season in all competitions after winning the first 10 games.
The previous away defeat was also in Drogheda in the penultimate game of the 2012 season. It was the Bit o' Red's heaviest defeat away to another LOI club since losing 2-0 to Bohemians in July 2010.
Rovers have lost seven times previously under Ian Baraclough and in the games directly after have had two wins, two losses and three draws.
However Rovers still have a 100% record in the league and winning a ninth successive game to start the season would be the best start since Shamrock Rovers won the first 11 in 1965/66 and the joint-fourth best start in the history of the league.
It would also leave Rovers just two wins away from equalling the club's longest league winning streak of 11 games.
Sligo have won all four away games in the league so far, the last team to win five away games in a row in the Premier Division was St. Pats who went on a six game winning run in 2011.
By winning the first five away games, it would equal the club record for the best start to a season away from home in the league set in 1936/37.
That is also the only other time Rovers have won five away league games in succession. That run consisted of wins over Drumcondra (3-1), Shelbourne (2-0), Bohemians (4-3), Shamrock Rovers (6-1) and Bray (5-0).
It is three league games scoring at least three times, in all of last season Rovers only scored three goals away from home twice (Drogheda and Shelbourne).
Last six games:
23/3/13 LOI Sligo Rovers 2-1 Limerick (Anthony Elding, Jeff Henderson)
29/3/13 LOI Bohemians 0-3 Sligo Rovers (Raffaele Cretaro, Aaron Greene, Anthony Elding)
1/4/13 LOI UCD 0-3 Sligo Rovers (Aaron Greene x2, David Cawley)
6/4/13 LOI Sligo Rovers 2-0 Shelbourne (Anthony Elding x2)
13/4/13 LOI Sligo Rovers 2-0 Cork City (Lee Lynch, Anthony Elding penalty )
16/4/13 SS Cup Drogheda Utd 2-0 Sligo Rovers
Gavin Peers can make his 200th league appearance for the club. He will become the 12th player in club history to reach the milestone, the other 11 are as follows:
Tony Fagan 431
Raf Cretaro 305
Tony Stenson 290
Harry McLoughlin 275
Gavin Dykes 255
Conor O'Grady 239
David Pugh 236
Johnny Armstrong 228
Chris Rutherford 222
Martin McDonnell 214
Paul Fielding 207
The two teams have played in 123 league games with Pats holding the edge having 58 wins to 35. Of the 50 league games Rovers have played away against Pats there have been 12 wins for Rovers and 36 defeats.
Rovers haven’t won any of the last six visits to Richmond Park losing four, that’s our current longest run without a win at a venue in the league.
Going back further Rovers have won there once in 15 with 11 losses in those games.
That win was a 2-0 victory in October 2009 with Raf Cretaro scoring twice. He also has five goals in his last four starts against them.
The win previous to that came on 21st January 1998 with Marcus Hallows scoring in a 2-1 win.
In the last five visits to Inchicore, Rovers have scored just once with Alan Kirby getting the only goal in a 2-1 defeat in May 2011.
Rovers famously won the last meeting between the sides to win the league last October in the Showgrounds but it’s our only win against them in the last six.
Rovers didn’t lose any of the three game played against Pats last year for the first time in 20 years. Pats did come close however with Christy Fagan missing a last-minute penalty to win the opening encounter in the Showgrounds.
That was after an own goal from Kenny Browne in the first half had put Rovers in front and then Sean O’Connor get Pats level with 20 minutes remaining. The next meeting took place August with Ian Baraclough's team taking another vital point on the way to the title. There was very little between the sides throughout and the game finished scoreless.
The final game was the third last of the season and became a huge day for Rovers. Raf Cretaro put Rovers into a 2-0 lead inside 24 minutes but that wasn’t enough as Pats came back in the second half with goals from Christy Fagan and Chris Forrester getting Pats level with still a half hour remaining.
The game would be decided by a late penalty which Mark Quigley converted to gave Rovers a 3-2 win and with it the league title.
Last six league meetings:
26/5/11 St. Pats 2-1 Sligo Rovers (Alan Kirby)
23/7/11 Sligo Rovers 0-0 St. Pats
8/10/11 St. Pats 1-0 Sligo Rovers
27/4/12 Sligo Rovers 1-1 St. Pats (Kenny Browne o.g.)
24/8/12 St. Pats 0-0 Sligo Rovers
13/10/12 Sligo Rovers 3-2 St. Pats (Raffaele Cretaro x2, Mark Quigley penalty)
Opposition: St Pat's
Pats have won four of their last five games keeping clean sheets in all of the wins. They have also kept clean sheets in eight of their last ten home games in all competitions with only Shamrock Rovers and Dundalk scoring.
Their season began in the Setanta Cup as they were drawn to play Glentoran. After a 0-0 draw in the first leg in Richmond Park they were eliminated after losing the second leg 1-0. Rovers would go on to knock Glentoran out 8-0 on aggregate in the next round.
Their league campaign began with a Shane McFaul goal giving them a 1-0 home win against Drogheda on opening night. However they suffered a heavy defeat next losing 3-0 against Shamrock Rovers. They bounced back by winning 1-0 in Limerick next before lsing again this time at home to Dundalk 2-1.
They have gone on a good run since starting with a 1-0 win in Bray which was followed up with a win over UCD by the same margin. They won a third game in-a-row to put themselves third in the table at home to Shelbourne last time out with a hat-trick from Chris Forrester
Last six games:
15/3/13 LOI Shamrock Rovers 3-0 St. Pats
30/3/13 LOI Limerick 0-1 St. Pats (Killian Brennan penalty)
2/4/13 LOI St. Pats 1-2 Dundalk (Conan Byrne)
5/4/13 LOI Bray Wanderers 0-1 St. Pats (Chris Forrester)
12/4/13 LOI UCD 0-1 St. Pats (Anto Flood)
15/4/13 LOI St. Pats 4-0 Shelbourne (Chris Forrester x3, Conan Byrne)