OWEN HEARY believes that St Patrick's Athletic can recover from their weekend slip-up at home to Bohemians and go on to lift the Premier Division title this season.
For the second time this season, St Pat's threw away a 1-0 lead at home to Bohs and finished up with a 1-1 draw and that result, combined with a win for Dundalk away to UCD, sent Dundalk to the top of the table at the Saints' expense.
Pat's do have a game in hand, away to Derry City tomorrow night, and even a draw there will put Liam Buckley's side back on top.
But Heary, who won seven league medals as a player and has a clear understanding of how to sustain a title challenge, feels that Pats have what it takes to come back from their disappointment.
"They have the better squad of players, they've good experience. This is probably a bit of a knock-back for them but it's probably a good knock-back in the sense they know they have to go and win more games," said Heary, proud of his side's display away to Pat's in that 1-1 draw where Dinny Corcoran's second-half goal cancelled out an early strike from Pats man Daryl Kavanagh.
Pat's boss Buckley is also upbeat about his own side's chances of a first league title since 1999, with that key game in the Brandywell tomorrow offering the Saints a chance to bounce back.
"There's two months to go, no one died, we've picked up a point," Buckley said of the 1-1 draw.
"If someone one said we were going to win our last 12 games, I'd say they must have some crystal ball. I'm glad we have the opportunity to go back top of the table, with equal games played. A draw will do us in Derry. No leagues are won easy," added Buckley.
While Pats focus in on that league challenge, Bohs enjoyed a positive weekend as they were the only one of the relegation-threatened clubs to pick up a point with UCD, Bray Wanderers and Shelbourne all losing, while even Limerick could now be dragged into the relegation battle after a 2-0 loss to Sligo Rovers on Saturday night, Limerick now having lost their last four games in a row.
"I'm not worried about the other teams," said Heary.
"We just have to look after ourselves. Shels came to Richmond Park and they got beaten 1-0 so us getting a point out of it is a bonus I suppose. The next game, Sligo Rovers, is another tough game. Then we've a break and we've Shels which is going to be a massive game."