A place in the final of the 2012 FAI Ford Cup Final is the prize on offer at Tolka Park when Shelbourne and Derry City meet in their semi-final replay (8pm).The sides drew 1-1 at the Brandywell on Sunday with David McDaid's second half equaliser cancelling out an early opener from Shels skipper David Cassidy.
The replay will produce a winner because there is provision for extra-time and penalties if required and all indications are that this is going to be a very tight contest.
The sides have now met four times this season with Shels winning the opening two games 1-0 while Derry won the third meeting, at Tolka Park in August, 2-0 before last Sunday's one-all draw at the Brandywell.
Shelbourne manager Alan Mathews, who is attempting to guide his side to a second successful cup final appearance, was happy to get out of Derry with a draw.
"It was a difficult game for us on Sunday, to go up and play a game at lunch hour, something we're not used to, but the guys adapted really well. Some of the guys hadn't really had 90 minutes under their belt for the last couple of weeks for various reasons. They produced a really hard working performance and we're looking forward to Wednesday night now. We prepared well for Sunday and will again for the replay. We're ready to go and we're ready to get a result on Wednesday," said Mathews.
But Mathews denied that having home advantage for the replay makes Shelbourne the favourites for the replay.
"I don't see it that way. Last year we were held to a draw by St. Pat's at this same stage of the competition, but we travelled to Richmond Park and returned with a 3-1 victory, so I don't accept that the pendulum has swung in our favour. It's another cup match, it may well be a different type of game but yes, we will be playing at home and we must try to take advantage of that fact," he said.
Derry will be disappointed not to have made home advantage count on Sunday but manager Declan Devine insists they will be heading south with plenty of confidence.
"We're travelling to have a go as we believe it's a match we are capable of winning. However, we must be strong defensively at Tolka Park which I consider to be a proper stadium with a good atmosphere. During the second half on Sunday, when we managed to play a bit, we bossed the game and we'll be looking to do just that and try and get an early foothold on the proceedings. I'd like to think we will give a good account of ourselves and try to control the match if we can," said Devine
A couple of the Shelbourne players took knocks in Sunday's game, but latest reports are that all should be fit for part two of the tie, leaving Mathews with a full squad to select from, the Reds having no suspensions for the game.
Derry major injury worry is experienced midfielder Barry Molloy who was suffering from cramp towards the end of Sunday's game but he will be given right up until kick-off to prove his fitness.
"Obviously, he's a very important player for us but if he can't get around the pitch the way we need him, then it would be pointless selecting him for the starting line-up. But he still has time and he has been receiving regular treatment, so we haven't give up hope on Barry playing just yet," reported Devine.
Devine believes that striker Rory Patterson will benefit from seeing action for the first time in 18 weeks on Sunday as did Stuart Greacen who has now recovered from an ankle injury.
Match referee is Anthony Buttimer with Ken Hennessey and Andrew Maher as his assistants and Paul Tuite as Fourth Official.
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