League of Ireland clubs learn Leinster Senior Cup fate

Despite facing an almost mockery status among most League of Ireland followers, the fourth round draw for LFA Leinster Senior Cup does bring some excitement to followers of the domestic game as it signals we are yet another step closer to the opening of the new season.

The bleak, football-less Friday nights will soon be a distant memory as the passion and emotion that lights up League of Ireland grounds on a weekly basis returns.

This is the stage of the competition in which the national league clubs join the scene and this year’s draw has thrown up some interesting pre-season encounters.

The defending champions of the Leinster Senior Cup, St. Patrick’s Athletic have been drawn at home to fellow Dublin side, Tolka Rovers while League of Ireland Champions, Dundalk will host relegated UCD, who will be looking to find some form ahead of a tough battle to return to the top flight in 2015.

Two all Premier League ties were pulled from the hat with a new look Bray Wanderers, in more ways than one, traveling to face Bohemians yet again at Dalymount Park while the runners up in this tournament last year, Longford Town will get an early taste of Premier opposition ahead of their return to the top flight as First Division champions, as Drogheda United come to Town.

There’s a local derby of sorts to come as Wexford Youths make the short journey to Belvedere to tackle Wexford Premier League side, North End United. Followers of the Youths can expect to see many familiar faces in the North End side with dozens of former players now playing their trade locally for North End.

The other all League of Ireland match up comes at Lissywoolen where Athlone Town will be reminded of what they are set to miss out on this season with the elite of Shamrock Rovers making a flying visit to Athlone.

Elsewhere, Crumlin United will be favourites to overturn Crettyard United away from home while Shelbourne will be looking to kick start 2015 with a big home win against non league, Newtown United.

No dates have yet been set for these fourth round ties but what we do know is the lie of the land in terms of the next round of the competition, as the quarter finals draw also took place last night.

Should Wexford Youths progress, they are likely to be rewarded with a replay of last seasons EA Sports Cup semi-final with Champions, Dundalk, only this time they would hold home advantage.

FAI cup winners, St. Pat’s look set for another run at this competition with the winners of their tie with Tolka Rovers facing the victor of Crettyard v Crumlin.

A Midlands Derby could be on the cards in the quarter finals, however, it looks unlikely with Shamrock Rovers overwhelming favourites to defeat Athlone Town while Longford v Drogheda may prove to be the tightest tie of the fourth round.

Finally, a Dublin Derby could also be set to headline the quarter finals stage with Shelbourne and Bohemians set to meet if they can progress in their respective matches.

The Author

Kieran Burke

While a fan and follower of football from all over the globe, Kieran Burke specialises in all things League of Ireland with opinionated pieces, big name interviews and match previews/reports his bread and butter. Check out his new website www.betweenthestripesblog.wordpress.com

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