Horgan wary of slipping up against Hoops
Dundalk star Daryl Horgan has warned his team-mates that a slip-up at home to Shamrock Rovers tonight could let the Hoops right back into the title race.
But Cork City again showed they are also a threat to the reigning champions as John Caulfield's side reduced Dundalk's lead at the top to just five points with a 3-1 win over St Patrick's Athletic last night.
Having come from behind to secure a draw away to Bohemians on Friday, the feeling around Dundalk is that, should they avoid defeat against Pat Fenlon's side this evening, their march to the league title will not be stopped.
"I am sure Rovers will come here thinking that this is their chance to get back into contention so we have to deal with that," says Horgan.
"To me, Rovers are in a better position than Cork City as Rovers have two games in hand on Cork. We have to play Rovers twice and they are a real threat from where I am looking at it. It's very tight up there at the top of the table, and you can't rule anything out, so getting a win in this game against Rovers tonight is vital for us," added Horgan.
"We need to up our game from the performance we had away to Bohs on Friday and get the three points.
"We have won nothing yet and the three teams in contention will keep at us until it's decided. We have eight games left and 24 points is a lot to play for.
"You're not guaranteed three points in any game in this league and we had to battle hard for the draw against Bohs at the weekend," added Horgan.
"We didn't play sensationally on Friday but we ground out a draw, and in the circumstances that could prove to be a very good point, come the end of the season.
"We have shown all season that we can score late goals, get late winners. Richie Towell got us out of jail with the equaliser well into injury time the other night but there is a strong character and spirit in this season, and I think we will show that again in this game tonight."
With Stephen McPhail available after a two-month absence due to injury, and with Kieran Marty Watters and Mikey Drennan free from suspension, Rovers have a full squad to pick from.
It was another sorry affair for Pats last night as the Saints fell to a fourth successive loss in Cork. Goals from Alan Bennett and Kevin O'Connor had the home side 2-0 up on 28 minutes and Darren Dennehy added a third before Morgan Langley's 65th minute strike provided a mere consolation for Pats, now 13 points off the pace.
Dundalk v Shamrock Rovers, live Setanta Ireland (ko 8.0)