Dundalk will try and snap the longest current unbeaten run in the top flight by winning their first away game since the final day of last season when they face in-form Galway United at Eamonn Deacy Park on Friday evening (kick-off 7.45pm).

The Lilywhites go into the West having gotten back on the horse with a rousing 1-0 injury-time win over reigning champions Shamrock Rovers thanks to John Mountney’s sweet strike at Oriel Park last week.

That continued their solid home form as they bagged a sixth straight clean-sheet on the Carrick Road, this time under first-team coach – and current stand-in manager – Liam Burns, who is suspended for this trip having picked up a fifth yellow card of the season at half-time against the Hoops.

Just 20 miles down the road on the same night, Galway were doing Dundalk a huge favour by coming from behind at the death to defeat ninth-placed Drogheda United at Weavers Park, as the gap between the County Louth clubs closed to just three points at the bottom of the league.

Drogheda have the opportunity to extend that again when they take on Waterford FC in a televised fixture at the RSC on Thursday, but Dundalk’s full focus will be on Galway and improving their form on the road having taken just two points from the 24 available so far, the worst away record in the division.

However, while Galway have gone on a long sequence without losing – going back eight games to a 2-0 defeat at home by Bohemians in front of the Virgin Media cameras on April 1st – their return of points at Eamonn Deacy Park will give Dundalk some encouragement.

Galway have scored just one goal in their last six outings there and have taken the second-fewest points (9) at home, above only fellow newly-promoted Waterford (8), with that in stark contract to their away record which is the second-best behind league leaders Shelbourne.

Dundalk’s confidence-boosting win over Rovers – just their second victory of the season – saw them bounce back from back-to-back losses in Drogheda and Waterford, a costly pair of pointless journeys which continued their winless run on the road.

PosClubPWDLFAGDPts
122127325141143
223118432181438
3208752920931
4209473024631
5197651413127
6206772126-525
7187382021-124
82266102226-424
92147101328-1619
102037102034-1416

Their only away points this year came at Shamrock Rovers on the opening day and in Sligo last month, their last haul of the maximum coming at already-relegated UCD last November as they eased past the Students 5-1.

Galway, meanwhile, have drawn their last two home games 0-0 with Sligo and Derry City, which followed a 1-0 win over Shels in mid-April. Prior to that, they failed to score there in defeats by Bohs and Shamrock Rovers and a stalemate with Drogheda.

But their overall form, an unbeaten run which is one longer than the table toppers, has seen them rise to fourth in the table and just four points off the top three with two games in hand. Their 3-2 win in Drogheda last week was an unexpected scoreline given that they had netted just eight and conceded seven all season up until then.

Two of those goals had come at Oriel Park in February, Dundalk’s first home game of the campaign, when Ed McCarthy and Aodh Dervin scored in the first half in a 2-0 win, which stunned the Lilywhites who had earned such a positive point in Tallaght seven days earlier.

Now, Dundalk will hope to instead build on a good result against Rovers, on what is their first Premier Division trip to Galway since the final game of the 2017 season, a night when the Tribesmen were relegated. Dundalk won 4-3 thanks to goals from Niclas Vemmelund, Jamie McGrath, Patrick McEleney and, in injury-time, Michael Duffy.

Dundalk, though, have bad memories from there last season when they were thumped 4-0 in the FAI Cup quarter-finals in September, all the goals coming in the first 39 minutes. Galway’s last home league victory over Dundalk was in April 2017 thanks to goals from ex-Lilywhites Vinny Faherty and Gary Shanahan, who netted a 93rd-minute winner.

Team News
Robbie Mahon and Dara Keane are injured while George Shelvey is suspended. First-team coach Liam Burns will also serve a touchline ban after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season against Shamrock Rovers last week.

Quotes – Daryl Horgan
“At the minute, we’re in a relegation dogfight. We know that. We need to play like we did against Shamrock Rovers last Friday to get out of it.

“Galway got a good win in Drogheda. They’re flying it, so they’ll be full of confidence down at Eamonn Deacy Park. It’ll be a tough game. They’ve been really good so, we will have to bring the same intensity, same levels of quality, same hunger, same everything really that we did against Rovers.”

Match Officials
Referee: Mark Houlihan
Assistants: Eoin Harte and Conor Fitzgibbon
Fourth Official: David Dunne