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Friday 15 December 2017

Hoops boss O'Neill calls for calm

SHAMROCK Rovers boss Michael O'Neill has asked Hoops fans not to panic after their poor start to the season, writes Aidan Fitzmaurice.

With just one point from two games so far, Rovers are today second from bottom in the table and eight points behind leaders St Pats and Bohemians, so tomorrow's home game with Dundalk is a chance for Rovers to get their season moving.

"It's important that we don't overreact," O'Neill said in relation to Tuesday's home defeat to St Pats. "Obviously we were disappointed to lose the game but the conditions were difficult; we failed to adapt and paid the price.

"The players know that they have to do better. We've got a good and strong group of players here, and we'll be looking for the right kind of reaction from them against Dundalk," he added.

Rovers handed new signing Robert Bayly a debut as sub against Pats, but finding a striker is a priority for O'Neill given the absence of Gary Twigg and Dessie Baker.

Dundalk striker Fahrudin Kudozovic says his side are keen to try their luck on the Tallaght Stadium pitch.

"The last time I played there, it was a brilliant game," he said. "It's a good venue. I love playing on nice pitches. The surface there is really good for football.

"It's a good experience for fans; it's on the TV again, there's always a buzz about big games, and I'm really looking forward to it. A lot of the bigger teams have already slipped up. Rovers obviously had a disappointing result on Tuesday night and they'll want to get back on the right track."

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