Astana – PearceyPlays #FM20 OS5 C2 S1 – Part 45 – Dundalk – August 2023

Welcome back to Dundalk for an action-packed August 2023 – Potentially 10 matches if all goes (really) well.

If(No, When!) we get past Astana there will be a 3rd round tie versus either Dinamo Zagreb or Molde, and if we can get past that a big club awaits in the 4th Qualifying Round.. Put 4 league games and 2 domestic cups, 1 a semi-final and it becomes the busiest month of the save by a long shot. Initial start of months stuff first.

We’ve done it πŸ™‚ A clean sweep of the IPD team of the week following the 10-2 versus Longford πŸ™‚

Manager of the Month.

Β£1M out of the door last month with the transfers (Β£600k) being most of it. Still an A- with the board, Dynamics Good, Very Good, Very Good.

2nd August 2023 – Astana (H) – UCL Champions 2nd Qualifying Round 2nd Leg

We welcome Astana to Oriel Park knowing we need to win, and a very winnable 3rd Qually Round will await us versus either Molde or Dinamo Zagreb.

4-4-2, lets get after them on the back of the 10-2 last game. Astana go with their 4-2-3-1 2 DM formation, and are without Romanian Rotariu. Let’s do this!!

FT Dundalk 2 (Collins 19, Jenkinson 68) Astana 0 Att 4,314 (26 Away) – Dundalk wins 2-0 on Aggregate

Raining cats and dogs in Dundalk this evening. Quiet start, Collins going close in the 12th minute. But Collins comes good, 1-0 Dundalk in the 19th minute, and it’s a worldie of a pass from jenks on the break that puts him in, easily making an angle to score past the Astana Keeper. Tommy Collins involved in most of our forward work. We look dangerous every time we go up the pitch. Then a kick in the gut – Duffy injured in the 32 minute – potential foot injury πŸ™ Dan Kelly – your time to shine!! And he nearly scores in injury time, his header beaten away. 1-0 at the break.

Would quite like that second goal ASAP. 65 gone, 14 shots on target!!! Benson for Taylor. And then a real highlight, Jenks with a 25 yarder after we peppered the Astana back line with crosses. A simple ball from McEleney, and Jenks tees it up and leathers it. 2-0, 22 left. And now it’s 10 left. McCabe on for Gannon. Astana pushing on a bit now, they have to really. But we get to the final highlight, and it’s all over πŸ™‚ 2-0, dominating from the lads, who are playing some lovely football.

And we will be playing Dinamo Zagreb, who snuck past Molde 2-1. They beat Dundalk 3-0 on Aggregate in the 3rd Qualifying Round last year, time to show them how much we’ve grown!

Michael Duffy – Pulled Ankle Ligaments – 2/3 Weeks. Could have been worse, though he’ll miss the 3rd Round I think.

Also Jenks gets banned for Yellows, meaning he’ll miss the 1st leg versus Dinamo.

The Dinamo matches will be over the next 2 Wednesdays with a League Cup Semi in the middle – Currently a 9 game month!!

Big win for St. Pat’s versus rivals for 3rd Cork City, and Waterford keep themselves in the picture with a win against Shelbourne.

Our U19’s beat Monaghan Cavan 5-0, goals from Pierce Andrews, 2 from Martin Kenny & 2 from Brian Stapleton.

5th August 2023 – Sligo Rovers (A) – Irish Premier Division

We make the trip to Sligo this afternoon, kicking off 100 hours less time difference before our massive UCL Champions 3rd Qually Round tie in Zagreb, 1,800km to our south east. Not as bad as travelling to Kazakhstan but still it will have an effect. Sligo are LDWDL last 5, Shelbourne the win, Derry & Shamrock the draws, Cork & St. Pat’s the losses so they won’t be a Longford.

Jenks & Collins keep their places, Collins because of the run he’s on, Jenks because he’s banned from the first leg so will get a week off anyway. Going to play exactly the same as we did against Longford. Sligo going 4-4-2.

FT Sligo Rovers 1 (Brilly 36) Dundalk 5 (Connolly 29, McGrath 45, Jordan Kelly 70, 71, 80) Att 1,712 (231 Away)

The lovely Irish rain πŸ™‚ Sligo looking good going forward, we look good on the break. The breakthrough comes in the 29th minute – Brian Connolly intercepting a horrible cross-field clearance, lashing the ball in from 22 yards with the keeper badly positioned. 1-1 in the 36th, a Direct Free Kick from 25 yards… “Show some Passion” – 2-1 Dundalk just before half time πŸ™‚ McGrath finishing a lovely Connolly cross. 2-1 at the break.

Sligo still look pretty dangerous – they pass the ball around well. 65 gone, Jenks & McCabe off for Benson & Gannon. And we get the crucial 3rd in the 70th, Jordan Kelly at the 2nd bite of the Cherry after a good pass by Rea and lovely holding play by Collins. Kick Off highlight… 4-1 πŸ™‚ Jordan Kelly again, profiting from a bungled clearance, Johnny-on-the-spot. 2 in 2 minutes. And it’s a 10 minute hat-trick! Rea again spraying the ball to Collins, quite the outlet as the TM, who runs on before picking a beautiful low cross to Jordan, who side-foots home from just goal-side of the penalty spot. 5-1 πŸ™‚ McGarvey for Collins. And it finishes 5-1, a beautiful performance in the 2nd half again.

11 games left, 9 points clear. Ball in Shamrock’s court tomorrow.

8 points gap after the lads at Cobh do really well to get another point. really hope they can hold on to 8th over these last 11 games.

We’ve had a scout report on Dinamo – Similar to Astana, maybe a bit better, but another non-playable league so I hope our dynamics will trump their ability.

And we have the draw for the Playoff – the last round before the League stage proper and all that potential cash :). Who will we play – when we get past Dinamo :)…

HJK Helsinki (OK – Playable League, players on similar wages to us) or Red Bull Salzburg (Moneybags…. They have Adam Traore & Takumi Minamino amongst others currently… but non-playable)

4 players in the IPD team of the Week – Wingers Brian Connolly & Jamie McGrath and both forwards, Tommy & Jordan.

9th August 2023 – Dinamo (CRO) – UCL Champions 3rd Qualifying Round 1st Leg

Maksimir, Zagreb, Home to Dinamo, Capacity 35,123

We arrive in Zagreb knowing we need to play out of our skins over the next two legs to get that Playoff spot (Which I think comes with a guaranteed Europa League Group Stage spot). Dinamo slight favourites with the bookies. 33yo Joselu (Newcastle & Stoke amongst others) starts up top.

Dan Kelly in for injured Duffy, Benson for suspended Jenks. Going to keep on doing what we do. Dinamo going 4-1-2-3 DM Wide (Attacking)…

FT Dinamo 1 (Joselu pen 41) Dundalk 2 (Collins 39, 86) Att 23,122 (30 Away)

Dinamo start with their DM, Ademi (North Macedonian International) as an Orange injury – looks like he’s been brought back early. Good early chance, Collins tackled as he was about to shoot. And Dan Kelly hits the cross-bar from a McEleney free kick in the 6th minute… Great start. Dundalk very much on top. Dinamo with their first highlight in the 34th minute! But a massive moment in the 39th minute. BPD Ray Moore with a 50-yard ping, Collins muscles Orban (Hungarian international) off the ball, runs in and scores beautifully. 1-0 Dundalk. Next highlight is a Dinamo deep free kick. Penalty…Gojak apparently shoved by Ngoy… 1-1, Joselu. First goal conceded in the UCL this season, Game 5. 1-1 at the break.

No highlights until the 64th minute, ending with McGarvey dragging a shot wide. McGrath for McEleney. 70th, hat-trick man Jordan Kelly on for McGarvey. Last 10, Holloway on for Taylor, BWM(S). Dundalk still looking good going forward. And that man Collins gets in to puts us 2-1 up in the 86th, getting to a header from a Gannon cross in front of both Theophile-Catherine (had a couple of years at Cardiff 2013-15) and Orban again. This boy is a beast! We enter stoppage time, and from a Dinamo corner in the last minute nearly get our 3rd on a counter, but we end the game 2-1 winners – a famous day for Dundalk football club πŸ™‚ Same again in a week’s time please πŸ™‚

HJK get a really good draw versus Red Ball Salzburg. Djurgardens beating Dynamo Kyiv a bit result too. League Cup Semi on Sunday before we host Dinamo next Wednesday…

Jake Taylor gets a ban for yellows so will miss the 2nd leg – Jenks will be back though!

Interestingly Derry played the above on the Thursday night – 1 day less rest before the Semi.

Taken a look at Shamrock – They only lost 2-1 at Vitesse Arnhem in the Conference League Best Placed 3rd Qual Round 1st Leg so take an away goal back to Tallaght Stadium. They beat Odd 4-3 on Aggregate in the Last Round – Andrew Moore with the winning goal.

Longford get a big 3 points versus Sligo on the Friday. Shelbourne have 10 games to avoid the drop.

Our U19’s beat Drogheda 2-0, goals from Tommy Carlin & David O’Callaghan.

We’ve had a DM youth poached by Marseille!!! He better be good!

13th August 2023 – Derry City (H) – League Cup Semi Final

We welcome Derry to Oriel Park this afternoon for the League Cup Semi Final, with our minds really on the UCL game versus Dinamo coming up on Wednesday. They have been pretty up-and-down form-wise recently, but did beat Waterford 1-0 last time out.

4-4-2 Positive. Tommy Collins gets a rest today, And I’m keeping Jenks fresh – Robbie Benson has been a rock as the DLP. Taylor playing as he can’t in the 2nd leg through suspension, otherwise our 2nd team in full flow. Cobh Ramblers play Longford in the other Semi tomorrow.

FT Dundalk 2 (Jordan Kelly 13, 79) Derry City 0 Att 4,500 (225 Away)

Looks like a lovely August afternoon in Dundalk for this Semi Final. And we are on the front foot early doors. And we take the lead in the 13th minute – a beautiful counter, Taylor lumping a ball forward wide on the left, McGarvey gets their first, beating Fitzpatrick, leaving a 2-on-1, squaring the ball to Jordan Kelly who finishes well. 1-0 Dundalk. Lots of chances coming our way. 1-0 at the break, 2/3rds possession and 16 shots to 1…

Dundalk still on top in the first 15 minutes of the 2nd half. Davenport on for Taylor on 60. Collins on for McGarvey for the last 20. And we get that crucial 2nd goal in the 79th after absolutely battering Derry – Jordan Kelly again with a fine near-post header from a McGrath cross from the byline. 2-0 Dundalk. Gannon for McCabe for the last 10. And time ticks away. 2-0, we’re in the final πŸ™‚

Big win for St. Pat’s – if we win our game in hand we will be 11 points clear with 10 games left.

We will be playing our old friends Cobh Ramblers in the league Cup Final, after a hell of a Semi Final versus Longford. Cobh were 4-0 up, Longford came back to 4-3 before David Evans finished the game off. The game will be at ours, Oriel Park, on 23rd September.

2nd Leg moved to Tallaght Stadium (8,000 capacity)

16th August 2023 – Dinamo (CRO) (H – Tallaght) – UCL Champions 3rd Qualifying Round 2nd Leg

We welcome Dinamo to Dublin this evening knowing losing 1-0 would be fine, but wanting to keep up this crazy unbeaten streak that goes back 34 matches in all competitions. I didn’t see anything that worried me in the first leg, but we all know how FM can fuck you over, so I’m wary.

Going with Collins and Jordan kelly to start up top – they are both on fire. Holloway starts as a holding CM, letting Jenks do Jenks things. McGrath keeps his place on the left – he fits this formation better than McEleney. Settled back 5 for these big games. Dinamo go with the same 4-1-2-3 DM Wide.

FT Dundalk 2 (Jordan Kelly 7, 12) Dinamo 0 Att 8,000 (19 Away) – Dundalk wins 4-1 on Aggregate

Dinamo kick off in the green of Tallaght Stadium. And we only go 3-1 up on aggregate in the 7th minute!!! Dinamo break and look threatening, but Corrigan puts in a lovely tackle, Dan Kelly gets the loose ball, runs for 30 yards then passes to his namesake, short pass from Jordan to Collins and his 1-2 finds Jordan free off the back of the Dinamo defence. He scores the 1-on-1 from just outside the area. He’s playing like Brian Sammon did for me for Cobh to get us promoted! And I’ve also got Tommy Collins as well!! 1-0 Dundalk. We have the ball in the net in the 11th minute – a McGrath header from a Holloway cross, but he was just off, maybe a foot or so. But it is 2 on the night and 4-1 on agg in the 12 minute – Dinamo defenders at 6’s and 7’s as another beautifull team move leads to McGrath slipping Jordan in, he scores from 9 yards in acres. Collins coming deep was the set-up, lovely play. Kick Off Highlight… Nearly 3-0 – they are so pushed up we are picking them off for funsies. Should have been the hat-trick in the 19th minute, this time Jordan misses his 1-on-1. Theophile-Catherine getting absolutely skinned by the lad. Some of this football is taking the piss πŸ™‚ 2-0 Dundalk at the break – Dinamo need 4.

Glen Rea on for booked Holloway at half time. Quiet first 10, until Dan Kelly rattles the bar with a volley. Connolly on for McGrath on 60, who was looking a bit tired. Last 15, McGarvey on for Collins. The boys are attacking to the end as time ticks down, another famous European night draws to an end. 2-0 Dundalk on the night, Playoff here we come πŸ™‚

We face Red Bull Salzburg in the playoff after they sneak past HJK on away goals. We’ve got to be thinking we can do this, surely???

So we get a 9-game month – 3 fixtures rescheduled, 2 to September, 1 to October.

Right, what’s next? Athlone in the FAI Cup 1st Round, that’s in 3 days, then Salzburg at Tallaght (I should imagine) 3 days after that… The Dinamo 2nd leg was our 42nd competitive fixture of the season… Looking at 60+ games as we are definitely now at least in the Europa League.

19th August 2023 – Athlone Town (A) – FAI Cup 1st Round

We make the trip to the midlands to play an Athlone side currently bottom of the First Division, though they have a Sugar Daddy German Chairman… Old boys Dara Costelloe & Ethan Devine are there currently on silly money. Will be rotating a fair bit with the RB Salzburg 1st leg on the horizon.

Giving Brian Stapleton a game (No. 10), and have a couple of the kids on the bench who will be getting some game time. Athlone go with a Cautious 4-2-3-1 Wide.

FT Athlone Town 1 (Woudenberg 51) Dundalk 3 (McEleney 11, O’Shea 20, Connolly 39) Att 362 (212 Away)

There’s a gulf in ability on show, and we take the lead in the 11th minute, McGarvey getting free, waiting for support, dinks a little cross over and McEleney finishes well on the volley. he doesn’t do well in a 4-4-2, but the moment there’s only 1 up top he pops up with a goal. The rain starts to fall, and in the 20th minute it’s 2, West Brom’s own Dara O’Shea tapping in a McEleney deep free-kick on the half volley. 3-0 in the 39th, Connolly with a nicely placed finish after good work from Davenport & McEleney. 3-0 at Half Time.

16yo Alan Brady (STC-TM(A), 6ft 1in) on for McGarvey, as the rain batters down. Athlone have the ball in the net early, but Woudenberg was offside. He does score in the 51st minute though, getting away from Laera. 3-1. 70, Rea for Benson. Last 10, 20yo winger Sinclair Armstrong on for McEleney. Job done, 3-1 it finishes.

Β£15k for the win. Big upset is Bray beating Shamrock 3-0 – I had a look and they had the kids out as they beat Vitesse Arnhem 2-0 in the Conference League 3rd Qual Round to go through 3-2 on aggregate!! They face AEK Larnakas from Cyprus in the 4th Round, the winner will be in the Conference league Group Stage!!! Come on Shamrock!!! Waterford puts St. Pat’s out on penalties, Cobh beat Shelbourne 1-0. Everything else by the book.

Our U19’s beat Ballina 3-0, goals from Sinclair Armstrong, Anthony Forde and Brian Stapleton.

We’ve had a scout report on RB Salzburg – They’re a good side. Can we do it again? Getting to the group stages of the Champions League would be mental πŸ™‚

We’ve had the FAI Cup 2nd Round Draw.

We face giant-killers Bray Wanderers (8th in the 1st Division). Matches on the 1st/2nd September. Our League game with St. Pat’s moved to 23rd October.

22nd August 2023 – FC RB Salzburg (AUT) (H – Tallaght Stadium) – UCL Champions Playoff 1st Leg

We welcome a star-studded Salzburg side to Dublin this evening, but we can’t fear them – we’ve got to go out and dominate like we did versus Astana. The Bookies have it tight, makes me think we are better than I think in terms of the European opposition (And with Shamrock beating Vitesse as well that’s definitely possible).

Our best first team at the moment – the kids up front doing absolute bits (10 goals in the last 5 games for Jordan Kelly, 9 in 7 for Tommy Collins). Jamie McGrath is on fire on the right wing, and Jenks is doing Jenks thinks as the playmaker. Duffy back from his Ankle Ligament pull – he’ll get 60 or so. The back 5 picks itself. Salzburg going 4-2-3-1 Wide, danger men Traore and Minamino on the flanks.

FT Dundalk 2 (Jordan Kelly 61, Jenkinson pen 78) FC RB Salzburg 0 Att 7,793 (404 Away)

A good start, Salzburg looking good on the ball, Jordan Kelly nearly scoring after a lovely ball from Jenks. Definitely not overawed in the first 10. A massive chance in the 14th, Duffy played in, but he basically passes it to the Keeper…. We definitely look the better team. We’ve missed some absolute sitters. Towards the end of the half Salzburg go a bit more attacking, and O’Malley makes a couple of fine saves, but its a close game. 0-0 at the break.

Duffy off, showing a potential thigh injury…might just have to put him in cotton wool. Dan Kelly on, Inverted. How have we not got a sellout, 207 seats going begging! 61st minute, Jenks with a free kick out wide. He swings it in. The Keeper Stankovic (Austrian international, 8 caps) comes for it, gets nowhere near, and Jordan Kelly is on hand to header home!!! 1-0 Dundalk!!! 70, Holloway for Taylor, CM(D). 78th minute, McGrath hauled over in the box, we go to VAR… PENALTY DUNDALK!!. Giving Jenks the penalty as McGrath is looking Nervous… 2-fucking-0 lads!!!! Bottom corner, gorgeous πŸ™‚ Last 10, McGarvey on for McGrath, going for the 3rd πŸ™‚ Danger in stoppage time from Salzburg, but O’Malley is there – NONE SHALL PASS!!!! 2-0 Dundalk it finishes, would say that’s the best win in Dundalk’s history πŸ™‚

Good win for Kobenhavn over Galatasaray. Slavia Prague play Djurgardens tomorrow in the 4th Champions play-off.

Michael Duffy – Thigh Strain – 5/6 Weeks – Time for Connolly to shine!

Right, Shelbourne in the league in 3 days, followed by a trip to the Tirol to end this crazy, crazy month of football. Regardless what happens in Salzburg this is absolutely mental. And we will get stronger.

Chris McCabe – Pulled Ankle Ligaments – 2 Weeks. A shame for Chris, who has been getting good game time.

Slavia Prague beat Djurgardens 2-0 in their 1st leg tie.

Racking up the cash on the Champions League gravy train πŸ™‚

25th August 2023 – Shelbourne (A) – Irish Premier Division

We travel to Tolka Park 8 points clear and a game in hand over Shamrock Rovers. Shelbourne are bottom, and we are unbeaten in 36 competitive matches. What could possibly go wrong…

This is a good IPD side – McGarvey up top, going 4-1-4-1 to allow McEleney to do his thing. Sheehan gets a start at right wing-back with McCabe out for a couple of weeks. Shelbourne go with a Positive 4-4-1-1. Why do I think this is going to be a tough one???

FT Shelbourne 0 Dundalk 0 Att 1,017 (300 Away)

Plenty of men behind the ball for Shelbourne, feels a bit like the Cobh 0-0 at the moment. And we have wingers dropping like flies – McEleney with a tigh hamstring, Dan Kelly with a twisted knee… Jordan Kelly on, McGarvey to the right. A poor half of football for the first time in a while, 0-0

Mark Hanratty (21yo, 5ft 6in) on for Dan Kelly on the left wing at half time. 4-3-3. Hanratty looking dangerous (16 Pace) early on. 70, last sub Gannon on for Sheehan. FFS, McGarvey’s sent off now, 2nd yellow (A Push apparently). And then we’re down to 9!!!!!!!!! Aidan White injured. Getting the proper FM treatment here. 3 injuries and a sending off. Can we see this out? Just. Shelbourne score in the 6th minute of injury time but Giurgi is offside. 0-0, but what a fucking toll that game has taken…

3 games clear with 10 games left. St. Pat’s pulling up to the back of Shamrock (Who drew 1-1 away in Cyprus in their Conference League game).

Aidan White – Twisted Ankle – 4/5 Weeks. Fuck, lets see if we can get a good loanee as cover. (Stop Press – We can’t get a loanee in outside of a transfer window, so fuck off…). Jacob Davenport can play there, we shall see.

Dan Kelly – Twisted Knee – 5/6 Days. Awkward when we have the 2nd leg v Salzburg coming up. He would have been on the bench, as would have Aidan.

Patrick McEleney – Tight Hamstring – 2/3 days. OK, not so bad.

Our U19’s beat St. Mochtas 5-1 – goals from Anthony Forde, Chris SHields, Martin kenny with a brace & Brian Stapleton.

FUCK OFF GAME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Sean Gannon, Blisters, 8-11 Days. We have no registered right backs for the 2nd leg, all 3 injured… Hoping Dara O’Shea can do a job. Resting the entire 18 now for the last 2 days before the game.

6 points clear with the game in hand after Shamrock see off Shelbourne 3-0. Cobh Ramblers now 6 points clear in 8th after their 4-2 versus Sligo.

Jamie McGrath has signed a new contract until 2026 πŸ™‚ He’s been very useful as the right midfielder in the last 15 games or so.

Djurgardens turn their tie with Slavia Prague around, winning 3-0 on the night and 3-2 on aggregate, Luxembourg international Dany Mota with a hat-trick, the winner in the 94th. Shows that we have to be careful here.

Lots of call-ups – Jordan Kelly for the Ireland U21’s and Tommy Collins for the Senior Northern Ireland squads my picks.

30th August 2023 – FC RB Salzburg (A) – UCL Champions Play Off 2nd Leg

Stadion Wals-Siezenheim, Salzburg, Capacity 30,188

We make the 1,500km journey to Salzburg today knowing a good performance puts us in the Champions League Groups, the draw being tomorrow. Injuries have really started to hurt us now, especially on the wings. We need to be solid this evening. But we do know 1 away goal makes things very difficult for RB.

Still pretty strong, main issue is at right back, with both registered players Gannon & McCabe out Dara O’Shea steps in. Connolly starts on the left wing, otherwise we are full strength. Salzburg stay the same, Positive 4-2-3-1 Wide. let’s go make some history…

FT FC RB Salzburg 1 (Traore 40) Dundalk 2 (McGrath pen 57, Collins 60) Att x (x Away) – Dundalk wins 4-1 on aggregate

Dundalk start in their Grey and Black stripes this evening – becoming quite fond of that kit. RB looking dangerous early on. All the highlights are with Salzburg. If we can get to HT at 0-0 that would be superb. O’Malley is keeping us in it. But it’s 1-0 Salzburg in the 40th minute – Traore heading into an empty net after a good break. 1-0 Salzburg at the break.

Jordan Kelly off, Holloway on, 4-1-4-1, Collins up top as a nuisance more than anything. Salzburg hit the bar with a header in the 49th minute… But a massive moment, McGrath getting clattered again, this time by Adama…VAR…PENALTY DUNDALK!!! McGrath has the ball (Didn’t get the option to change him)… GOAL McGrath, bottom right hand corner πŸ™‚ Salzburg need 4. AND THEY’VE FALLEN APART!!!!! 2-1 Dundalk, 2 in 3 minutes, this time Collins scoring beautifully after good all-round team work and a lovely ball by McGrath. Taylor off, Benson on as the DLP, Jenks as a CM(S). McEleney on for Connolly for the last 10, McGrath to the left wing, inverted. Time ticks away. They need 4 goals. AND IT’S ALL OVER!!!! DUNDALK ARE IN THE CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP STAGE!!! We absolutely FM’d them πŸ™‚

Kobenhavn destroying Galatasaray hearts with a 96th minute penalty to win on away goals.

OH. MY. FUCKING. GOD. 5 years worth of wages right there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Let’s see what the board wants to improve! Below Average Training & Youth facilities…

A drop in the well πŸ™‚

Pop that in as well – 12 days to get some new computers and a whiteboard. Nice.

Last day of the month, the Champions League Draw πŸ™‚ We’re in Pot 4 Obvs.

We miss Lyon, Liverpool & Sporting.

Also miss Real, Juve & RB Leipzig. Bayern, Barcelona & Benfica?

No, miss them. I’d like Group E – Think we could take Brugge.

No, Group D it is!! Man Utd, Roma & Porto πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Our first game is at home to Porto on September 19th. And we play all the way up to December 5th – Our League season finishes on November 3rd. Shamrock play AEK Larnakas this evening to see if they can qualify for the Conference League…

And they do!! 3-2 on aggregate! Superb for the Irish League as a whole from a Coefficient standpoint.

So that’s that for the month. And what a month!!!!!

Just that blip versus Shelbourne. 4 goals let in, 20 scored, and we’re now 39 games unbeaten!!!

Bray Wanderers up on the 2nd before an-almost 2 week international break (All the first teamers not involved will be given a week’s holiday) before 3 massive games in a week – Shamrock in the League, where a win would be a big nail in the Shamrock coffin, Porto at Tallaght Stadium (Wish we could use the Aviva) and Cobh ramblers in the League Cup Final. I imagine a win versus Bray will lead to another game in there somewhere as well.

I’ll leave you with the key Highlights from the month. See you soon πŸ™‚

Key Highlights – August 2023

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