How big a crowd will turn up on Friday night at the Markets Field?
LIMERICK FC resume action following the mid-season break in the SSE Airtricity League First Division with a high stakes fixture against league leaders Shelbourne at the Markets Field this Friday night, 7.45pm. Tommy Barrett’s charges who sit in fourth place in the league table, made it five games unbeaten in the First Division after playing out a 0-0 draw with basement side Wexford at Ferrycarrig Park in their most recent outing.
The game saw a welcome return to competitive action for Limerick winger William Fitzgerald who had been sidelined through the opening months of the season due to injury.
Limerick have taken 14 points from a possible 21 over their last seven First Division league fixtures. The Blues have edged ahead of fifth-placed Cabinteely on goal difference in the First Division table, while the Blues enjoy a one point lead over sixth-placed Bray.
Limerick trail table toppers Shels’ by eight points in the league table. Both sides have lost four of their seventeen First Division fixtures this season.
Limerick edged the first half of their most recent league outing against Wexford FC in terms of possession at Ferrycarrig Park, but both sides struggled to create much by way of clear goal-scoring opportunities.
The Blues came close to breaking the deadlock in the 59th minute when a free-kick from Kieran Hanlon almost deflected into the Wexford net.
Ten minutes from full-time, the visitors again came close to opening the scoring from a free-kick, only for Shane Tracy's well struck effort to flash inches over.
Colm Walsh O'Loughlen missed the Wexford game due to an ankle injury, as did Andy Quaid while Tomas O'Connor was also an absentee due to sitting the Leaving Certificate exam.
Limerick will be looking to improve upon their goal-scoring return during the second half of the league season. The Blues have managed 19 goals during their opening 17 fixtures.
Wexford, who lie in tenth place in the table, are the only side to have scored fewer league goals in the First Division this term. Eighth-placed Galway Utd and Athlone Town in ninth have also scored the same total of goals in the league as Limerick, 19 to date.
However, the Blues’ defensive record compares very well with sides in the Division.
Following Friday’s clash with Shels’, the Blues host Longford on July 5. Limerick play four of the top five sides in the table next up with games against Bray and Drogheda also looming.