Bus Éireann Women's National League Previews
Wednesday, April 23
Cork Women's FC v Peamount United, Bishopstown. Referee: Chrissie Buckley.
PEAMOUNT United travel to Bishopstown knowing they must record a victory to keep the Bus Éireann Women's National League title race alive until Sunday's final round of fixtures.
Eileen Gleeson's side cannot afford to be charitable against the home side, whose nightmare campaign has seen them fail to pick up a point heretofore and their most recent result was a ten goal mauling by Wexford Youths.
"It's tough enough to have a trip to Cork for a midweek game but we are going down knowing we have to finish the last two games out and finish it out with two wins hopefully," said Peamount's Eileen Gleeson.
"It was a disappointing result in the cup on Sunday. We didn't perform too well and all we can do is wish Castlebar well in the final. Castlebar are strong side and capable of taking results off anybody at home so they may cause Raheny problems in the other game. We're only responsible for our own destiny so that's what we're concentrating on."
Cork are still struggling with a number injuries. "Peamount are pushing for title and will be coming down looking to get the three points so we know it's a tough challenge. We'll have to work as hard as we can and hope for the best," said Cork's Chris O'Mahony.
Castlebar Celtic v Raheny United, Celtic Park. Referee: TBC
RAHENY United can become champions for the second season running with a victory in Castlebar tomorrow night but will be extremely wary of the home side who are in top form recently.
Celtic pushed Raheny all the way in the most recent league meeting between the sides two weeks ago then dumped Peamount United from the Bus Éireann Women's National League Cup at the semi-final stage last Sunday.
Castlebar boss Adrian Carberry has doubts over Rachel Kearns and Emma Mullin but expects to be at close to full strength for the visit of the champions.
"We put in a great performance and got a great result on Sunday. We probably caught Peamount on an off day. It was another hurdle overcome beating them for the first time," he said.
"We'll go in with the same approach. We don't want Raheny to win the league in our backyard and we have our own battle for third.
"It's been a great league and we'd like to take it down to the wire. Our season seems to be down to changing belief in our players. They're not afraid of anybody anymore and they realise that on their day they can beat any side in the country."
Raheny lost Ireland U19 star Clare Shine to a broken leg in their cup semi-final loss to Wexford Youths on Sunday but will look to retain their title without the need to get a result in their final fixture on Sunday.
"The result I could take but the injuries we picked up were a bigger blow. Wexford probably had the better chances in the game and got what they deserved. We didn't perform," said Raheny's Casey McQuillan.
"The injuries is knock back after knock back for us. Niamh Walsh got a head injury, Clare Conlon, Pearl Slattery also got knocks and Clare Shine is out with a broken leg. Ciara Grant is also doubtful too.
"It's going to be tough enough and will be tougher with the injuries. The girls will respond. I've no doubt that we will. The most recent meeting between the sides was very tight. Going up there in midweek adds a bit to it."