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First Team News

Team news ahead of today’s first leg tie away v Stjarnan in Reykjavik

Stjarnan v Shamrock Rovers

UEFA Europa League First Qualification Round (first leg)

Thursday, June 29th 2017. Kick off 8.15pm (Irish time)

Speaking with Rovers’ Head Coach Stephen Bradley said:

“I thought first half we weren’t great against Drogheda. Second half we upped our levels and scored four really good goals and played some really good football. So a good performance and scoreline to go into Europe. But I felt throughout the game we didn’t defend right as a team, not just the back four. Having watched Stjarnan on Saturday they’re an attacking threat from set plays and open play so we’ll have to defend much better than that to keep a clean sheet.

They’re a decent side, they’re very strong from set plays, long throw ins and corners and they’re a big, physical team. So we have to make sure we’re switched on from set plays and not give away anything silly. In terms of their weakness, I feel that if we play to our attacking strengths we can definitely get at them.

We have training later on. We trained yesterday and had a look at everything (whether or not to play two strikers) and both looked good so we’ll have a look at it again in training and make a decision this evening.

Luke Byrne and Sean Boyd went for a header in training and Sean landed on Luke’s shoulder and damaged his ligaments. But Luke has said to me this morning he’ll be fine. The doctor is worried about it at the moment but Luke, the type he is, he said he’ll take an injection or tablets or whatever he needs to do to play so hopefully he’s OK.

Trevor Clarke and Ronan Finn had knocks at the weekend as did one or two others but they came through it fine. Darren Meenan was sick yesterday and we decided it was best he didn’t travel.

It’s massive for this group, being a new group. I think that they understand very early in terms of training this evening and what we’re going into. It’s a European game for the club. I think it’s very important that we realise as a group that as soon as we land it’s head on for the game. Because it’s a new group and we’ve a lot of players that haven’t played in Europe together. So we’ve got to get that into them tonight and make sure they’re ready to go tomorrow.

I believe if we play to our ability we can definitely give them a game and keep the tie alive going back to Tallaght which would be massive because we know we’ll get a big crowd and we’ve been playing well at home this year”.