Finn Harps travel to City Calling Stadium on Friday night to take on Longford Town as league action returns following the mid-season break.
Before the break Harps recorded a first win in ten matches with a brace from Sean Houstan and one from Ryan Curran earning Harps the points against Sligo Rovers, their previous victory having come against Bray Wanderers at Finn Park on April 15th. Last Friday night Harps played Cliftonville in a friendly, with the Belfast side winning 1-0 at Solitude.
Harps will be missing Dave Scully through suspension as he has reached 8 yellow cards while Adam Hanlon will miss the game through injury. Sean Houstan and Damien McNulty are both doubtful for the game as they look to shake off knocks.
Manager Ollie Horgan said “We have struggled to get results in Longford in recent years and this will be equally as difficult. It’s the sort of game they’ll be targeting to kick start their league campaign.”
Friday night will see the return of Paul Hegarty to the touchline as he replaces Gavin Dykes as assistant manager. “Gavin got the offer from Ballinamallard and it was a priority for us to get an experienced replacement in quickly”, said Horgan.
“I’m pleased to get someone local who is as experienced and knowledgeable as Paul in so quickly and he’ll be important for us as we look to stay in this division”.
Paul Hegarty is the third former Harps manager to serve as assistant to Horgan, with James Gallagher and the recently departed Gavin Dykes having previously filled the role.
When the sides last met back in March it was Harps that took the points in a tight game, as a Ryan Curran penalty was enough for Harps to take the win.
Longford’s last game was a 0-0 draw at Bray Wanderers, while before that they lost to high flying Cork City and beat Waterford United in the FAI Cup. In a televised game on Friday the 13th they lead St Patrick’s Athletic on three separate occasions only to find themselves pegged back each time.