LIMERICK FC manager Pat Scully has paid his players the ultimate compliment by insisting he wouldn’t swap one of them for any member of Longford Town’s squad, ahead of the clubs top-of-the-table clash this Saturday.
Limerick trail Airtricity League Division One pacesetters Longford Town by four points ahead of the Flancare Park clash (7.30pm).
Promoting-chasing Limerick will be determined to overturn the result of the clubs Good Friday meeting at Jackman Park when the Midlanders recorded a plucky 2-1 victory.
Pat Scully said: “There is not one player I would sign off their (Longford’s) team.
“We didn’t participate in the last game we played at home against Longford earlier in the season.
“We were lethargic and nervous in that match
“We respect Longford, but we do not fear them.
“I believe if we play at the right tempo and with the proper desire we are capable of getting a favourable result up there on Saturday evening. But on Saturday we have to go out and play a strong game.”
Limerick FC will have striker Denis Behan available for the trip to Longford after he missing last Friday’s FAI Ford Cup defeat to Shamrock Rovers due to suspension. Andrew Bhandarkar is also set to be available for selection along with Sean Brosnan.
Stephen Bradley, whose game-time against Rovers was limited to a 20-minute appearance as a substitute due to illness, will be fully fit for Saturday’s game.
Midfielder Joe Gamble is again unavailable for selection, however.
Manager Scully says that while he understands why supporters and the media will fuel the hype around this weekend’s top-of-the-table clash, the Blues were treating it in the same manner as any League tie.
“Of course Saturday’s game is important,” Scully agreed.
“We have spoken about that. In the past we have let sides get too far ahead of us in the League table.
“Supporters and the media build games up. The most important thing from my point of view as the manager is that the players go out and perform.
“There is pressure, but you have to enjoy it. These are the games you want to be involved in.
“We prepare the same way for every game.
“To date we have won nine games and in the three we lost, we just didn’t perform. Over the past four or five weeks, you can see the spirit and passion coming back into the players in the way they are performing.
“It is about performance, both as individuals and as a team.”
Following this Friday’s game, the League will take a three-week mid-season break with Limerick FC back in action on Friday, June 22.
The break from competitive action co-incides with the start of the European Championship in Poland and Ukraine.