Letterkenny Rovers will be without the suspended David Shovlin for tomorrow evening’s Four Lanterns Ulster Senior League play-off against Cockhill Celtic at Dry Arch Park (kick-off 7.30pm).
The title is on the line when the USL’s big two clash in Bonagee with Rovers bidding to end Cockhill’s recent dominance
The Inishowen side have won the last five titles and on Saturday night they defeated Rovers 3-1 in the League Cup final.
Rovers, whose last USL title came back in 2009, did get one up on Cockhill last month with a 2-1 win in the Knockalla Caravans Senior Cup final and last weekend a late Steve Okakpo-Emeka goal at Leckview Park gave Rovers the win over Cockhill they needed to force a play-off.
Eamonn McConigley will be minus Shovlin, who was sent off late in Saturday’s final at Maginn Park, but he welcomes Chris Malseed and Ryan Lonergan back from holiday while Paul McVeigh and Brian McVeigh have returned from injury.
It is expected that Conor Tourish will also miss out due to a holiday.
“We’ll be missing Shovlin, but apart from that I think we should be okay,” McConigley said.
“It’s all to play for and we’ll prepare ourselves for that.
“If you ask anyone in Cockhill if they’d swap the Cup, I’d say they would. We’d be the same. We’re really looking forward to Wednesday. We were out of it, but we got a second bite and took it.”
Cockhill boss Gavin Cullen has had plenty of injury problems of late.
Laurence Toland was unable to start on Saturday, but his appearance off the bench yielded a match-winning two-goal haul and the Ramelton man could start this time around.
“Laurence wasn’t fully fit, but he wanted to play,” Cullen said.
Jimmy Bradley is another who’ll be fighting hard for inclusion, while Cullen is expected to play himself with Lee McCarron having departed for America on Friday.
Cullen said: “We have characters and good players. A lot has been made that maybe they’re gone – far from it. A lot has been made of players that are out and are injured, but we have a quality team and we are far, far, far from finished.”
Cockhill had a hand on the prize a few short weeks ago, but now they go in a winner-takes-all joust with everything on the line.
Cullen said: “It’s annoying for us that we’re in this position, but we are and we have to deal with it.”