Two weeks ago Harps ended a recent dismal run of results when they defeated Wexford Youths courtesy of Kevin McHugh’s strike at Finn Park.
Although they went down to Enda Curran’s second-half goal in Athlone last Friday, Peter Hutton’s side will be hoping to build on the Wexford win with another victory when Salthill visit on Friday.
Harps have a decent home record in 2013 with only Athlone Town and Waterford United having left Finn Park with victories.
And with Salthill departing Finn Park with just one draw in seven previous visits to Ballybofey, you can see why Harps supporters are hopeful of another victory on Friday.
However, Harps should be wary of the threat posed by Friday’s visitors – who have won twice in their last four games – after what happened when the two sides met in Drom in mid-June.
Then, with Harps expected to leave the County Galway venue with three points, Devon recorded their first home victory of the season on a 2-1 scoreline.
“That was the final game before the break in which we lost in the final minutes of the game,” said Harps boss Peter Hutton as he looked back on that game earlier this week. “Salthill had prior to then and even of late recorded some good results and have added a few new faces to their ranks also, so they will be a tough nut to crack.”
“Salthill last week lost to Waterford but from what I’m lead to believe they were unfortunate and the game was finely balanced for a long period of time with Waterford enjoying a fair share of lady luck,” continued Hutton.
“Either way though we are at home and need the three points to get ourselves back on track and if we can apply the same work ethic and application as last week then I’ve no doubt we’ll be fine.”
Hutton was disappointed that his side didn’t build on the victory over Wexford with a similar result in Athlone last week, especially as he felt his team were the best side on the night.
A 1-0 victory for Roddy Collins table topping side put them two points clear at the top of the table.
“It was very disappointing that we came away with nothing from a game we were fairly comfortable in and certainly deserved something from,” said Hutton of the game in Lissywollen.
“Ciaran Gallagher had little to do for the majority of the game and generally we looked assured and had a few good chances ourselves but again unfortunately we didn’t take them. The players acquitted themselves well and were bitterly disappointed they got nothing for all their efforts but it merely shows the fine line between winning and losing in this league.”
However, all is not lost and a play-off spot is still within reach for Harps should they go on an unbeaten run between now and the end of the season.
“We are fortunate that the play off spot is still within our control but we really need to be winning games now and building a bit of momentum going into the final games. This is the period of the season when results are upper most and performances are secondary it’s now all about getting points on the board,” said Hutton.
Harps will be without Michael Doherty who misses out through suspension. Damien McNulty is still sidelined as continues his recovery from a recent foot injury.
Suspended: Michael Doherty
Injured: Damien McNulty (foot)
Form Guide (last six league games)
Finn Harps: L-D-D-L-W-L (5 pts)
Salthill Devon: D-L-W-L-W-L (7 pts)
Last six home games against Salthill Devon
20-Aug-10 – Finn Harps 3-2 Salthill Devon (First Division)
08-Apr-11 – Finn Harps 0-0 Salthill Devon (First Division)
24-Sep-11 – Finn Harps 2-0 Salthill Devon (First Division)
06-Apr-12 – Finn Harps 3-0 Salthill Devon (First Division)
03-Aug-12 – Finn Harps 2-0 Salthill Devon (First Division)
19-Apr-13 – Finn Harps 1-0 Salthill Devon (First Division)
Finn Harps Goalscorers 2013
Sean McCarron – 8 (1 in FAI Cup)
Kevin McHugh – 7
Michael Funston – 3
Keith Cowan – 3 (1 in FAI Cup)
Thomas McMonagle – 2
Thomas McBride – 1 (in League Cup)
Matt Harkin – 1 (in League Cup)
James Doherty – 1 (in League Cup)
Marc Brolly – 1 (in League Cup)
Aaron O’Hagan – 1 (in League Cup)
Finn Harps Results 2013 (Harps goalscorers in brackets)
02-Aug-13 – AL – Athlone Town 1-0 Finn Harps
26-Jul-2013 – AL – Finn Harps 1-0 Wexford Youths (McHugh)
19-Jul-2013 – AL – Mervue United 4-0 Finn Harps
12-Jul-2013 – AL – Finn Harps 0-0 Longford Town
28-Jun-2013 – AL – Finn Harps 2-2 Cobh Ramblers (Funston, Cowan)
28-Jun-2013 – AL – Waterford United 3-0 Finn Harps
14-Jun-2013 – AL – Salthill Devon 2-1 Finn Harps (Funston)
08-Jun-2013 – AL – Finn Harps 2-3 Athlone Town (Funston, Cowan)
31-May-2013 – FAI – Finn Harps 2-1 Wexford Youths (Cowan, McCarron)
24-May-2013 – AL – Wexford Youths 2-1 Finn Harps (McCarron)
20-May-2013 – LC – Finn Harps 1-1 Derry City (O’Hagan) – Derry win 6-5 on penalties
17-May-2013 – AL – Finn Harps 1-0 Mervue United (McCarron)
11-May-2013 – AL – Longford Town 2-3 Finn Harps (McCarron, McHugh, McDonagh og.)
04-May-2013 – AL – Cobh Ramblers 2-2 Finn Harps (McHugh, McCarron)
26-Apr-2013 – AL – Finn Harps 0-1 Waterford United
19-Apr-2013 – AL – Finn Harps 1-0 Salthill Devon (McMonagle)
12-Apr-2013 – AL – Athlone Town 1-0 Finn Harps
05-Apr-2013 – AL – Finn Harps 0-0 Wexford Youths
29-Mar-2013 – AL – Mervue United 2-2 Finn Harps (McMonagle, McHugh)
23-Mar-2013 – AL – Finn Harps 1-0 Longford Town (McHugh)
15-Mar-2013 – AL – Finn Harps 4-1 Cobh Ramblers (McCarron 2, McHugh 2)
08-Mar-2013 – AL – Waterford United 1-1 Finn Harps (McCarron)
03-Mar-2013 – LC – Mayo League 1-4 Finn Harps (Harkin, Doherty, Brolly, McBride)
LC – League Cup. AL – Airtricity League, FAI – FAI Cup.