Ahead of what is the biggest game of the season so far, Sligo Rovers manager, Ger Lyttle is confident his reinvigorated squad can clinch a crucial victory against in-form St. Patrick’s Athletic at the Showgrounds tomorrow night.
With the quartet of deadline day signings all fit and available, and last week’s absentees also reporting fit and well, the manager has seven players available to him who were not in the squad last week, giving him the sort of headache team bosses usually crave.
“It’s a great headache to have. Everybody’s fit and well and rearing to go. Raf Cretaro, John Russell and Seamus Sharkey are back, having missed last week’s tie, and the new lads have settled in well, have some good training under their belts and are eager to get involved,” Lyttle reports.
New signings Greg Moorhouse, Vinny Faherty, Omar Haughton and Jamie McDonagh could all come into the squad for tomorrow’s match.
Rovers boss Gerard Lyttle spoke to Rory Houston and Gavin Cawley about the new signings…
Forward Greg Moorhouse says he is hoping to feature in Saturday’s game. He spoke to Gavin Cawley.
With the visitors having strung a winning run together in recent weeks but still tightly involved in the relegation struggle, Lyttle is expecting a Titanic battle but is not in the least overawed by the prospect.
“It’s a massive game. Pat’s are on a good run so they’ll be up for it – their form is actually the sort of thing we need to be finding, and we can start with a win on Saturday.
“We put in a terrific performance last week against Dundalk. That’s the sort of desire and commitment we’ll need from everybody for the rest of the season. Tomorrow’s game is huge for us, but there are lots of big games to be played yet so we’ll need everybody chipping in from now on.
“Our confidence is high after last week, we have an excellent home record, so we are really looking forward to it. Players want to be involved in big games, and where we are now, they don’t come a whole lot bigger than this. We’re ready for it,” he maintains.
With new arrivals Omar Haughton, Vinny Faherty, Jamie McDonagh and Greg Moorehouse adding quality to the squad in vital areas, the manager will have a few interesting choices to make in choosing his starting eleven, but he has a clear idea of the team he’ll send out.
“We’re at the stage now where we have to seriously look at team selection in terms of each game on its merits. Players will be fighting for places every week and that’s a healthy situation in any club. For this particular game, we’ve worked on a few things during the week, and I have a solid idea of who’ll be starting. I can confirm that atleast two of the new lads will be involved,” he says.
Thrilled with the level of vocal support and general backing from fans in the Dundalk game, Lyttle is appealing for more of the same tomorrow.
“Our fans have been terrific all season, and I’ve maintained all along that such support is really important for the players. They can be a big help tomorrow, giving us the lift and making Pats feel a bit uncomfortable. Our job is to reward that support with a good result, and we’re fully committed to doing just that,” Lyttle concludes.
The game will be live on Ocean FM in association with Cannings Spar House & Garden, Pearse Road, Sligo, with Rovers legend Alan Keane joining Darragh Cox for commentary on air and online on www.oceanfm.ie.