Preview: Rovers take on champions Dundalk

Sligo Rovers will conclude their first series on matches in the SSE Airtricity Premier Division on Saturday when Dundalk visit The Showgrounds, kick-off 5pm, live on

Rovers made it three wins in four matches last Tuesday when beating Waterford FC. The previous win was another 2-1 success over Shelbourne.

The Bit O’ Red enjoyed a 2-1 victory over the Lilywhites in 2019, one of just four defeats in the season.

Dundalk avenged that defeat in the FAI Cup semi-finals in front of a sold out Showgrounds crowd. This game will be played in front of no supporters due to the latest Covid-19 preventative restrictions.

In team news, John Mahon, Johnny Dunleavy and Garry Buckley are ruled out with injury.

Will Seymore will have a late fitness test because of a hamstring problem.

Kyle Callan-McFadden returns from injury.

Liam Buckley said: “It was a pleasing result on Tuesday night. The manner of the victory obviously made it even better. I thought we got what we deserved, the players kept at it and the performance was one we can really build on. We’re looking for more of that. It gives everyone confidence and after a difficult few months where we had to sit with that poor start, it is good we’ve put a few wins on the table. There’s still a lot to be done.

“We knew we would improve when some of our injured players returned. We have had the likes of Lewis Banks come back in, Danny Kane has done well and Alex Cooper made his mark on Tuesday. We’ll be calling on all of our players over time I’ve no doubt. It’s going to take a collective effort and we want the team performing well in that manner.

“This is one of the hardest games you’ll get in an ultra competitive division.

“I’m sure Dundalk are hurting from Wednesday and obviously now there is a change of manager. They’ve a fantastic squad so it doesn’t change a lot for us, it’s going to be a massive challenge. They’ll be looking to prove a point I’m sure. To be honest we’re focused on what we can do in the game.

“We’re only going to give ourselves a chance if produce our best. We passed and moved the ball better on Tuesday and we’ll look to do that again. It’s almost the halfway point so it would be good to get a result and tee ourselves up for the rest of the season.”