Possession is key for Pat’s against runaway leaders

ST PATRICK’S Athletic manager Liam Buckley insists keeping the ball will be a must if they are to deny SSE Airtricity League leaders Cork City a tenth straight league win when the Leesiders visit Richmond Park tomorrow night [Friday].

John Caulfield’s side, in beating Bohemians in Dalymount Park last Friday, set a new club record of nine league games in succession and Buckley appre-ciates the difficulty of the task his players face in bringing a halt to that impressive run.

Pats Players 26St Pat's manager Liam Buckley

“We have to keep good possession. I think that’s the key” he told The Echo.

“I’ve seen this Cork team. They’re a big physical outfit. They go long to [Sean] Maguire and then get up the field very quickly.

“It will be tough, but records are there to be broken and hopefully it will be us who beats them on Friday” he said.

Pat’s were left seething on the loss of two points last Friday after they were forced to settle for a 1-1 draw with bottom side Galway United in Terryland Park.

Rory Feely had edged the Saints in front just before the halftime break and, just when it looked like they would return home with the points, Ronan Murray served up an equaliser for the hosts in the closing minute of regulation time.

“Anybody would be disappointed to concede a goal with just two minutes to go” said Buckley.

“We didn’t play too badly. We’re due that bit of luck but we’ll move on.

“We did get the win over Bray on penalties in the EA Sports Cup after that. I thought we deserved it over the 90 minutes.

“It was a good win. They [Bray] have a big squad and they’ve thrown a lot of money at it. That’s three wins, one draw and one loss in our last five games.

“We’re not doing too bad. The new lads are finding their feet, but you’re seeing that with other teams. Rovers have brought in new players, Derry have brought in new players.

“In fairness to Cork, they have only signed Conor McCormack and maybe one more and they’ve done well to go top” he admitted.

On another note, St Pat’s are top of the SSE Airtricity Under 17 Elite Division after serving up an emphatic 5-0 victory over Derry City on Saturday.

The Inchicore side was four goals up by the halftime break, Adam Nugent bringing about their opener after just two minutes when his delivery was inad-vertently deflected in.

Anthony Purdy doubled their lead before a penalty by Ryan Burke and another Cian Hughes effectively put them out of reach with Conor Cowley completing the scoring seven minutes from time.

The team has now made it three wins from as many outings in the league and will be looking to maintain their form when they take on Drogheda United this weekend.

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